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Refugees: Children

Question for Home Office

UIN HL4314, tabled on 22 November 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to reinstate the scheme protecting unaccompanied refugee children to provide a safe route for unaccompanied migrant children.

Answered on

6 December 2021

The Government remains committed to the principle of family reunion and supporting vulnerable children.

Unaccompanied asylum-seeking children in Europe with family members in the UK are able to apply under existing routes to join eligible sponsors, such as those with refugee leave or humanitarian protection or with British or settled status. The Immigration Rules already make provision for a child to be reunited with a parent in the UK either under the Refugee Family Reunion Rules or via Appendix FM - depending on the immigration status of the parent.

In addition, paragraphs 319X and 297 of the Rules are extremely flexible provisions that already allow for children to apply to join a wide range of adult family members who are not their parents, if the relevant requirements are met. Under these Rules, we do not restrict the range of those family members. The requirements are there are serious and compelling family or other considerations which make exclusion of the child undesirable, suitable arrangements have been made for the child’s care and those relatives can adequately maintain and accommodate the child without recourse to public funds.

Answered by

Home Office