Steve McCabe MP (Birmingham Selly Oak) has written to the new Prime Minister demanding that he protect the rights of looked-after children and care leavers who are EU citizens by giving them automatic rights to settled status.
The MP, who is the Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Looked-After Children and Care Leavers, raised concerns about the rights of these vulnerable children and young people during the Prime Minister’s first statement on Thursday 25 July. Mr McCabe has now written asking if the PM will introduce a declaratory system that gives EU children in the care system, care leavers and those children classed as ‘in need’ an automatic right to settled status.
The MP took the decision to write to Number 10 after a less than clear answer from the Prime Minister. He has warned that the government’s registration scheme, the largest of its kind ever produced in this country, will prove costly and complex and may well lead to a ‘Windrush’ scandal for children in the care system if hard pressed local authorities can’t cope with the demand or cost which are being forced on them.
The MP is leading a debate in Westminster on the issue the first day Parliament returns after the summer recess but hopes the Prime Minister will look at this seriously before then.
Steve McCabe MP said:
“The government has a responsibility for all looked-after children and care leavers and as corporate parents they should do the right thing and give those that are EU citizens automatic rights to settled status.
“Rather than expecting overstretched and under-funded children’s services to navigate our complicated immigration system, I am asking the new Prime Minister to do the right and decent thing and give some of the most vulnerable children and young people automatic status.”