Lord Dubs: Allow 10,000 child refugees in to mark Kindertransport anniversary

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Lord Dubs: Allow 10,000 child refugees in to mark Kindertransport anniversary

Peer who came to the UK on the kindertransport urges Britain to take action for vulnerable refugees

Lord Alf Dubs
Lord Alf Dubs

Thousands of child refugees should be allowed into Britain to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Kindertransport rescue scheme, peers have been told.

Labour’s Lord Dubs said 10,000 unaccompanied child refugees should be given a home at the rate of 1,000 a year.

The peer, who came to Britain on the Kindertransport to escape the Nazis before the Second World War, said his “modest” request would be the best way to commemorate the groundbreaking plan.

The Kindertransport brought around 10,000 children aged between three and 17 to safety from Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia and Poland in the lead up to the Second World War.

Most were Jewish and more than half the children never saw their parents again.

In a debate marking the 80th anniversary of Kindertransport, Lord Dubs said there should be a “shared responsibility” and his plea was not just to the Government but to all European countries.

Communities and Local Government Minister Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth promised to draw comments made in the debate to the attention of the Home Office.

Lord Bourne said local authorities were doing a good job in providing homes for and supporting refugees but that did not mean “we can’t do more”.

He said there was a responsibility on government, a responsibility on individuals and a “global position” as well.

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