Sunday, 12 January 2020 09:16


The SNP has welcomed a new report from Amnesty International, the Refugee Council and Save the Children which focuses on the impact of family separation on child refugees in the UK.

Based on in-depth interviews with children and young people, the research reveals how the UK Government’s current family reunion policy harms child refugees and directly contradicts human rights law. 

Unlike adult refugees, child refugees who are in the UK alone have no right to be reunited with even their closest family members. Such unfair rules mean that for children who have fled persecution and war, their trauma may continue even after they have sought safety in the UK.

SNP Shadow Minister for Immigration Stuart McDonald MP said:

“This Tory government have failed refugee families, leaving some of the most vulnerable children separated from their parents with devasting impacts on their mental health and well-being. 

“The SNP has led the way on action to protect child refugees in the House of Commons, with my SNP colleague Angus MacNeil MP introducing a Bill to give refugee children full family reunion rights - but this effort was blocked by the UK Tory government. 

“This hard-hitting new research provides fresh evidence of the harm caused by family separation to child refugees in the UK. No matter how hard refugee families try to stay together, conflict and persecution can often separate them. SNP MPs will always back giving refugee children the right to be joined by their family here.

“The right to live safely with family should apply to child refugees just as it does to adults. It is high time the Government put the best interests of child refugees first and allow them family reunion rights.”

'Amnesty: UK Government 'deliberately and destructively' preventing child refugees from reuniting with their families - new report' -

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