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They called us 'Mum and Dad' and wanted to stay with us 'forever'

They called us 'Mum and Dad' and wanted to stay with us 'forever' | Race & Crime UK | Scoop.it
The parents at the centre of the Ukip fostering row have urged council leaders to consider their positions after they failed to apologise for removing three children from their care.

 

The couple said they felt "slandered and besmirched" after social workers took the ethnic minority children away because they were members of the UK Independence Party.
The husband said: "They should be considering their positions. These are people on incredible salaries who are paid to make responsible decisions but they can't do it.
"It's completely baffling that they just can't put their hands up. They say this is a complex case but we don't agree. It's very simple."
Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, condemned the council's decision as "indefensible" over the weekend after The Daily Telegraph revealed that the children had been taken away.
The Department for Education has mounted its own investigation and officials have demanded answers to a series of questions about the case.

Rotherham metropolitan borough council yesterday failed to apologise to the couple and refused to release the findings of an internal report into the case.
As the row threatens to dominate this week's local election Nigel Farage, the leader of Ukip, said that Joyce Thacker, Rotherham's head of children's services, should lose her job.
Mrs Thacker, who is paid more than £130,000 a year, this weekend defended the decision to remove the children from the foster parents last week because of their "cultural and ethnic needs".
Mr Farage told BBC2's Politics Show: "I want them to be pardoned, I want the children to be returned to them and, yes, heads should roll."
The couple, who are in their fifties and have been described as "exemplary" foster parents, yesterday questioned the council's claim that the children's removal was in their best interests.
The wife said: "How can it be in their best interests to remove them at a moments notice without giving them the time to meet and get to know their new foster parents?
"The council in Rotherham is from the dark ages. It's inconsistent with how the country feels and how this country is run."
She said that one of the girls they were looking after had started calling them "Mum and Dad" and said she wanted to stay with them "forever".
"She bumped into our grandson on the streets and said she missed him and missed us," she said.
"If the social workers or the guardians of this particular girl were to ask her if she wanted to come back we would welcome her with open arms. They had some really happy times here."
The couple were given just 20 minutes notice before the children were taken away from them.
"I was so distressed," she said. "We had to keep it together for the kids but inside we were so angry and upset. I had to go into the kitchen and take a deep breath.
Roger Stone, the council's Labour leader, said: "As we said on Saturday, membership of Ukip should not bar someone from fostering.
"We have been able to establish the facts in this case as far as is possible over the weekend, and I can confirm that the children are safe and in very good care.
"However, this remains a very complex case involving legal advice relating to the decision in question, particular features of the children's background and an external agency responsible for finding and providing the foster carers concerned."
He added: "This is a sensitive child protection case. It involves both vulnerable children and the foster carers, so the information the council is able to release publicly is limited by law.
"At all stages, however, we will seek to be as open and transparent as possible as we co-operate with the Secretary of State."

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WARNING: Rotherham's Labour council is actively harmful to children !

WARNING: Rotherham's Labour council is actively harmful to children ! | Race & Crime UK | Scoop.it
AN under fire Yorkshire council has sparked outrage by removing three children from the care of foster parents because they are members of the Ukip political party.

 

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council removed the children because the couple’s political affiliation was seen as being at odds with the youngsters’ European backgrounds.

By the council’s own admission the youngsters were happy and there was no question mark over the foster parents’ provision of care.

Tonight, council leader Roger Stone announced the Labour-run authority would investigate what had happened after mounting condemnation from political leaders including Education Secretary Michael Gove and Labour leader Ed Miliband.

Mr Stone said: “We are going to investigate to make sure everything has been done professionally.

“If the professionals give advice, we take it.

“We are going to investigate - we always would if somebody complains.

“We are looking to make sure all the correct procedures were carried out before the decision was made.

“There is no policy, as has been implied, that if you are a British National Party member you can’t foster children.”

Mr Gove said social workers had made “the wrong decision in the wrong way for the wrong reasons” and that he would be personally investigating and exploring steps to “deal with” the situation.

The politician, who heads the Government department responsible for children’s services and who was himself adopted as a child, accused Rotherham of sending out a “dreadful signal”.

He said: “Rotherham council have made the wrong decision in the wrong way for the wrong reasons.

“Rotherham’s reasons for denying this family the chance to foster are indefensible.

“The ideology behind their decision is actively harmful to children. We should not allow considerations of ethnic or cultural background to prevent children being placed with loving and stable families.

“We need more parents to foster, and many more to adopt.

“Any council which decides that supporting a mainstream UK political party disbars an individual from looking after children in care is sending a dreadful signal that will only decrease the number of loving homes available to children in need.

“I will be investigating just how this decision came to be made and what steps we need to take to deal with this situation.”

The children, a baby girl, a boy and an older girl, were removed by social workers after the council reportedly received an anonymous tip-off about the foster parents’ membership of the right-wing party which wants withdrawal from the European Union and immigration curbs.

Social workers said they were concerned about the children’s “cultural and ethnic needs”.

The South Yorkshire couple claimed a social worker told them Ukip was “racist”.

Mr Miliband said: “Being a member of Ukip should not be a bar to adopting or fostering children.

“We need an urgent investigation by Rotherham Council into the circumstances of this case.

“I don’t know all the facts of this case but I am clear, what matters is children in Rotherham and elsewhere, and being a member of a political party like Ukip should not be a bar to fostering children.

“We need to find out the facts and the council urgently needs to get to the bottom of exactly what happened.

“The couple concerned are making extremely serious claims, very disturbing claims.

“Right-thinking people across the country will think there are thousands of children who need to be looked after, who need fostering, we shouldn’t have the situation where membership of a party like Ukip excludes you from doing that.

“We need loving homes for children across the country.

“That can come in different forms, it’s not about what political party you are a member of.”

Ukip leader Nigel Farage called for resignations over what he said was an “appalling” decision.

Accusing the council of bigotry, he said he felt: “Very upset and very angry, particularly for the couple involved, who have been fostering for many years and are very decent people, and the awful shock to them of having these children removed, not to mention the upset to the children themselves.

“Politically, I’m afraid not surprised at all.

“This is typical of the kind of bigotry we get from the Labour Party and from Labour controlled councils.

“It was the Labour government that opened the doors to uncontrolled mass immigration into this country on a scale that we have never seen in the history of the island.

“And then anybody who tries to discuss or debate the issue is written off as being racist.”

Joyce Thacker, the council’s strategic director of children and young people’s services, said the decision to remove the children was taken after consultation with lawyers.

Asked what the specific problem was with the couple being Ukip members, Mrs Thacker told BBC Breakfast: “We have to think about the clear statements on ending multi-culturalism for example.

“These children are from EU migrant backgrounds and Ukip has very clear statements on ending multiculturalism, not having that going forward, and I have to think about how sensitive I am being to those children.”

She added that there was no issue about the quality of care the couple provided and said she would co-operate with any investigation.

The children, who stayed with the couple for eight weeks, were encouraged to speak their language which their foster parents were trying to learn, the foster mother said.

She denied that there had been any discussion between the family and Rotherham Council before the children were removed.

The woman said the council feared the couple could not meet the children’s cultural needs in the long term - a claim the family denied.

The woman added: “We were actively encouraging these children to speak their own language and to teach us their language.

“We enjoyed singing one of their folk songs in their native language, and having been told of the religious denomination of these children we took steps to ensure that a school of their denomination was found.”

The foster mother claimed the children have been placed with families who are also white British, and she questioned how the council thought these couples could fulfil the children’s cultural needs.

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