In a written statement made on 26 April 2016 the Minister of State for immigration, Robert Goodwill, announced that the initial figure given by the Government was incorrect because a pledge from one region to take 130 children had been missed.
The Home Office’s error is understood to have been uncovered in litigation brought by the leading refugee NGO Help Refugees.
The Government’s announcement that it will increase the number by over a third comes shortly before the High Court hears a legal challenge brought by Help Refugees to the consultation process by which the Government decided on the number of children to be admitted.
Josephine Naughton, one of the founders of Help Refugees, said:
“We welcome this increase in the Dubs number. Without the scrutiny and disclosure that our litigation forced upon the Home Office, the Home Office’s extraordinary error - missing 130 places for children when it only allocated 350 in total - would not have come to light.
“We think that this is far from the only flaw in the consultation process. We continue to push for the reopening of the consultation process and further revision of the number of these extremely vulnerable children to be admitted.”
“Help Refugees is challenging the Government’s consultation as inadequate and the specified number as arbitrary.
"This is an important victory in our legal case and a vindication of our criticisms of the Government’s approach. We believe that this very serious error is symptomatic of a deeply flawed consultation process.”