RCPCH responds to news reports on potential for children refugees relocated to Rwanda

Recent news reports have raised concerns that some age disputed children could be included as part of the Government's relocation of migrants to Rwanda under the UK Government's migration policy.
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In response, RCPCH has said:  

Young people who arrive in the UK, separated from their families and carers, may have faced unimaginably difficult circumstances and are vulnerable. They require and deserve support from the UK as a leading signatory to multilateral humanitarian and human rights law. 

Given significant reservations about the application and accuracy of age assessment, enforcing such assessment on children and young people may mistakenly identify them as adults, exposing them to inappropriate deportation and severe safeguarding risks. Disbelieving children and young people’s claims can incur significant, long-term harm. 

The departure of the first flight scheduled for 14 June 2022 will set a dangerous precedent for the future treatment of refugees and asylum seekers, including unaccompanied children. The College expresses deep concern over this.

The Prime Minister has outlined a vision of “global Britain”. In order to truly achieve this the UK must play its part in welcoming all those fleeing persecution and war, and needing protection.