South west London welcomes up to 27 Calais Jungle child refugees

SOUTH west London boroughs received up to 27 child refugees from the Calais Jungle camp after it was demolished in October.

Lambeth Council received six unaccompanied asylum seeking children after the Government asked councils in July to volunteer to support them.

The UK received more than 750 child refugees from the camp in total, with hundreds more unaccompanied minors still in France.

Lambeth councillor Paul McGlone said: “When children arrive here as refugees, completely alone after escaping terrible conditions, we have a responsibility to look after them and provide with a home where they can finally feel safe.

“We lobbied the government to increase the number of refugee families that they would take, we pledged to take 20 refugee families over the next couple of years, and we called on government to end its refusal to take unaccompanied children from Europe.”

Many of the children were united with family already in the UK, while others were placed into foster care.

Under the Pan London Protocol, all London councils receive Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children (UASC) into their care, but in October transfers increased to help refugees aged 18 or under fleeing the demolished camp.

Sutton took in seven child refugees, Merton six and Wandsworth three, while Kingston processed just one arrival.

An exact number cannot be ascertained as Richmond Council declined to give data as the number of children or vulnerable adults is fewer than five.

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