17:45 Tuesday 26th April 2016
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire
CHRIS MANN: One of the other big things you’ve been doing at the moment of course is your work with refugees.
HEIDI ALLEN: Yes.
CHRIS MANN: Trying to get the Government to agree to take more. Now that got blocked.
HEIDI ALLEN: Well yes and no. We had an announcement from the Government on Thursday/Friday last week that they would take 3,000 more, principally children and associated family members, so up to a maximum of 3,000 from the region. And that was a direct result of the fact that this amendment was coming back from the Lords this week. And that I think did help to stem the rebellion if you like. So ultimately that’s great news. We’re taking 3,000 more. But I’m still concerned about the child refugees who are in Europe, and that announcement didn’t do anything at all to help with that.
CHRIS MANN: So what can you do?
HEIDI ALLEN: Well it’s not over as they say. The Lords will be looking at it again tonight. Ping-pong, you’ll have heard the phrase.
CHRIS MANN: Yes.
HEIDI ALLEN: So we’ve pinged it back for one final time to the Lords tonight, who will look at the result of the Commons vote last night, and I believe Lord Dubs is tabling a slightly wider amendment that doesn’t have this magic 3,000 number associated with it. And I’m feeling pretty confident it might get through, in which case it’s most likely we’ll get to debate on it again next week. And I think because .. you know, if we get the wording right, something that the Government can be happy with and MPs can be happy with, then I think there’s still room for us to bring some more children in.
CHRIS MANN: Heidi, thank you so much. Heidi Allen there, the Conservative MP for South Cambridgeshire.