Welsh Liberal Democrat peers today helped to inflict another defeat on the Conservative Government in the House of Lords, this time on a vote to protect child refugees.
By 300 to 220, the House of Lords passed an amendment to the EU Withdrawal Agreement Bill to maintain the rights of unaccompanied refugee children elsewhere in Europe to be reunited with their family members in the UK.
This marks the fourth government defeat on the Bill, after the Lords passed three amendments yesterday: one moved by Liberal Democrat peer Jonny Oates to guarantee the rights of EU citizens living in the UK, and two to prevent Ministers from instructing lower courts to ignore legal precedent.
The Bill is set to return to the House of Commons tomorrow, when the Conservative Government is expected to try to overturn these amendments – against opposition from Liberal Democrat MPs.
Jane Dodds, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, said:
Liberal Democrats will not stand by while the Conservative Government uses Brexit to erode the UK’s proud tradition of providing sanctuary to some of the world’s most vulnerable people.
We will continue to stand up and fight for the rights of refugees across the globe, and I urge the Government to fulfil its moral duty and abandon these callous attempts to block children being reunited with their families.
Deputy Leader Baroness Christine Humphreys added:
I am proud that today Welsh Liberal Democrat peers, alongside colleagues and the tireless campaigner Lord Dubs, passed this crucial amendment to uphold our commitments to child refugees.
I hope that MPs from all parties and none will resist Government pressure to overturn today’s vote in the House of Commons and show that Britain still is an outward looking, compassionate and internationalist country.