In the House of Lords on 19th July 2017 Peers responded to a statement by the Immigration Minister about support for child refugees. The Bishop of Durham, Rt Revd Paul Butler, asked a follow-up question:
The Lord Bishop of Durham: My Lords, more than 25,000 unaccompanied children arrived in Italy last year. The cut-off date for Section 67 was 20 March 2016, which means that none of the children who arrived in Italy after that date could be helped. Given that no children have yet been transferred from Greece and Italy under the scheme, will the Government consider resetting the cut-off date?
Baroness Williams of Trafford: The most reverend Primate will appreciate that people are killed when they travel from the region to places such as France. It is really worth the House noting that those who benefit most from refugees travelling to places in Europe are the people traffickers—the unscrupulous thugs who bring those people at great peril across the sea, many of whom die on the way. That is why we are so keen to help children and families in the region, rather than have them make that perilous journey. A change in the date, I am sad to say, would act as that pull factor.