We were saddened and distured by the passing of the so-called Illegal Migration Bill earlier this month. This new law will have devastating implications for desperate refugees who have no choice but to flee their homelands and seek safety elsewhere. It is predicted that 45,000 children – including children who have been forced to travel here alone – could be locked up in the UK as a result of the Bill (Refugee Council). This is undoubtably a huge blow to all of us who have campaigned against these cruel measures, but we know that the Bill does not reflect the wishes of millions of people in the UK who believe that refugees deserve safety and compassion.

And we will not give up. On Thursday 27th July our friends at ECPAT UK won their legal challenge against Kent County Council and the Home Office, confirming that the practice of housing unaccompanied refugee children in hotels is unlawful. This practice – brought in as an ‘emergency measure’ two years ago – resulted in the disappearance of over 400 children, some of whom have never been found. The ruling sends a clear message, that children cannot and must not be treated differently because of their immigration status. #CareForEveryChild

I would like to thank every one who has taken time to campaign for a warmer welcome for separated children. With your support we will continue to ensure that children arriving in the UK receive the practical, emotional and social support they so need and deserve.

Richard Hammond
The Separated Child Foundation

31 July 2023