Target: Member of British Parliament David Thomas Charles Davies
Goal: Revoke and apologize for ridiculous proposal to do invasive x-rays of children’s teeth as a way of “determining their age.”
A British MP has asked that children from Calais have their teeth tested to verify their age as a way of reassuring citizens of the U.K. that they are not being duped by asylum seekers. This would require that children get an x-ray using radiography which would unnecessarily expose them to electromagnetic radiation. According to the Association of British Dentists, this is a very inaccurate way of measuring a person’s age.
Teeth x-rays were called for after several news agencies printed photos of refugees with captions questioning their ages. This fear mongering led many to question the motives of some of the more mature looking children. Some of the children from these areas full of conflict will certainly look older than their age suggests. Greif, stress, and hard living will mature you not only mentally, but also physically.
These children are traveling unaccompanied by an adult, and are only able to come to the U.K. because they have a family connection there. The government spends about 10 hours on each child’s case. They use documents and interview family members to figure out each child’s age. This process may not be perfect, but it is enough to determine someone’s age to a reasonable degree of certainty.
These children have been through so many horrible experiences at a tender age. They often are in dire need of mental and physical care. As a society it reflects poorly on us when we accuse people of deception and force them to undergo invasive testing when they are at their most vulnerable. Sign this petition to demand that MP Davies retract and apologize for his call to put these children through intrusive and inaccurate testing.
Dear Member of Parliament Davies,
Forcing children to undergo teeth checks to ensure that they are not trying to deceive the British people is unethical and inaccurate. You should revoke your call to have these tests done and apologize for proposing this measure.
You said this is a “very accurate” way to determine the ages of refugees. Yet experts on the matter, the British Association of Dentists, claim that is an imprecise way to determine the age of a child. It is clear that you did not consult with specialists when you made this erroneous comment. It is your duty as a public servant to issue a statement correcting yourself, so that the public is informed about the inaccuracy of these tests.
These young people have seen such horrors at such a young age. They are often in critical need of mental and physical care. Their situation should inspire empathy, not suspicion. As a society it reflects poorly on us when we accuse people of deception and force them to undergo invasive testing when they are at their most vulnerable. These tests are clearly unethical.
It is wrong and manipulative to use people’s fear of terrorists to bar young refugees from asylum. Please apologize for proposing such an unethical and inaccurate medical test to let the public know that you no longer seek to detect the age of refugees in this manner.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: fsHH