Rotherham council now twinned with Franco’s Spain: the UKIP foster care debacle
ROTHERHAM Metropolitan Borough Council has taken a leaf from General Franco’s book and removed children from “unsuitable” parents. The three children from East European were removed from their home because their foster parents are members of UKIP, the UK Independence Party. Rotherham says UKIP is racist. UKIP says:
UKIP was founded in 1993 to campaign for the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. Not because we hate Europe, or foreigners, or anyone at all; but because it is undemocratic, expensive, bossy – and we still haven’t been asked whether we want to be in it. But the EU is only the biggest symptom of the real problem – the theft of our democracy by a powerful, remote political ‘elite’ which has forgotten that it’s here to serve the people.
It’s not the affiliation that matters to Rotherham’s child snatchers, it’s any political affiliation. Rotherham Council is a composite blend of 63 people, of which only 4 are not affiliated to the Labour Party: three Tories and one Independent. Diverse it ain’t.
The council acted on an anonymous tip-off. The couple, experienced foster parents in their 50s, are said to be former Labour voters. The children were placed with them in September 2012. They were removed in November after two visits from the experts.
Joyce Thacker OBE, the council’s Director of Children and Young People’s Services, tells Radio 4:
“We always try to place children in a sensible cultural placement. These children are not UK children and we were not aware of the foster parents having strong political views. There are some strong views in the Ukip party and we have to think of the future of the children. Also the fact of the matter is I have to look at the children’s cultural and ethnic needs. The children have been in care proceedings before and the judge had previously criticised us for not looking after the children’s cultural and ethnic needs, and we have had to really take that into consideration with the placement that they were in…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.”
What can we make of it? UKIP says:
As the Labour-run council launches its own investigation into the matter, Labour leader Ed Miliband said: “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. 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.”
What about if they are members of the openly racist BNP, the far-out Monster Raving Looney Party, bigoted Respect, Sinn Féin? What judgement then, Ed?
Meanwhile, Education Secretary Michael Gove said: “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.”
So long as the party is popular – mainstream (what does that word mean, anyhow?) – it’s ok. If parents are members of a non-mainstream party, then a debate is required.
UKIP Leader Nigel Farage said:
“Rotherham metropolitan borough council has many questions to answer, both publicly and privately. They have to look at themselves in the mirror and ask who it is that is prejudiced? A normal couple who have fostered for seven years, or themselves who are blinded by political bias? Publicly they must make absolutely clear the decision-making process in this case, who was responsible for this decision and why. That the couple involved were former Labour voters should give them pause for thought, or do they regard any questions about the level of migration into this country, as Gordon Brown did, as bigotry?”
UKIP says it is not racist. But a New Zealander can be a victim of racism, isn’t not wanting to be ruled by “foreigners” racist?
The Daily Mail leads with:
“Snatched foster children are ‘traumatised’ says couple branded racist for supporting UKIP”
The children are :
“VICTIMS OF THE THOUGHT POLICE”
The foster dad is quoted:
“Of course. We love those children…They have been passed from pillar to post…They have lost their family and they just get moved around and another move might not be the best thing for them. Now we need to just wait and see what the report says and go from there…”
He says an official told him:
“We would not have placed these children with you had we known you were members of UKIP because it wouldn’t have been the right cultural match.”
The mother, a qualified nursery nurse, adds:
“The children have been placed with families who are also British white people, so how are these people going meet the cultural needs of the children if we cannot?”
She had earlier recalled a visit from a social worker and an official from their fostering agency:
“I was dumbfounded. Then my question to both of them was, ‘What has Ukip got to do with having the children removed?’ Then one of them said, ‘Well, Ukip have got racist policies’. The implication was that we were racist. [The social worker] said Ukip does not like European people and wants them all out of the country to be returned to their own countries. I’m sat there and I’m thinking, ‘What the hell is going off here?’ because I wouldn’t have joined Ukip if they thought that. I’ve got mixed race in my family. I said, ‘I am absolutely offended that you could come in my house and accuse me of being a member of a racist party’.”
It’s all about the kids. Unless you read Graeme Archer in the Telegraph, who thunders:
To purge the Leftist poison behind the Rotherham foster scandal, it’s time to elect our social services officials
Regarding Rotherham, the Labour leader, Ed Miliband, says “We need an urgent investigation by Rotherham council into the circumstances of this case”. Do we? Really? Might I save the Labour leader time, and Rotherham council the expense of an investigation. I’d bet my mortgage that the “circumstances” of this case are that positions of power in Rotherham are held by practitioners of Leftist identity politics.
The head of social services in Rotherham, Mrs Joyce Thacker, is straight from Peter Simple. She said “The children were from EU migrant backgrounds and Ukip has very clear statements on ending multiculturalism, which might be sensitive to these children”…
What’s truly disturbing is the sight and sound of the head of Rotherham’s social services, defending the decision, because what matters most to her is what she sees as a legal duty to meet those “cultural and ethnic needs” of the children…
If Mr Miliband is serious in wishing to hold an investigation into the pseudointellectual poison that runs through the leadership of our public sector, he’d do worse than to start with a mirror. All those glorious conversations about the correct way to order society, with unreconstructed Marxists, in the comfort of Hampstead homes owned by the indescribably wealthy: such intellectual larks! The impact of all that larking about, I’d guess, looks very different from Rotherham.
The Daily Star says Rotherham does not stand alone:
AN ex-nurse claims she was barred from working with Barnardo’s because she was a member of UKIP. Barnardo’s stepped in after Anne Murgatroyd revealed plans to stand as a UKIP councillor in Leeds. She claimed Barnardo’s said she “would not be appropriate” for the role, which involved working with young people leaving the care system. Anne said: “Their rationale was that because UKIP opposes multiculturalism it would not be appropriate for me to mentor young people coming out of the care system.”
Libby Purves writes in the Times:
Ms Thacker says she has been criticised in the past for not meeting “ethnic and cultural needs” and cited legal advice, though stopping short of saying the lawyers told her to do it. Nervous dread of cultural insensitivity certainly is a fault-line in social services: in the Victoria Climbié case, officers famously claimed that physical punishment was just part of African culture. More recently in Rotherham itself, denial obscured the relevance of Pakistani groups to the grooming and rape of young girls. Remember Laura Wilson, murdered at 17 after years of abuse: Rotherham social services had known about her since she was 11, but the subsequent inquiry revealed that the words “Asian men” were redacted with black lines on her file. Of course you shouldn’t stir up racial hatred, but this sort of behaviour suggests officials hiding reality from themselves. Thus fearful, politically correct piety obscures common sense and it becomes easier to see why a Thacker might panic on being told of the UKIP affiliation of a middle-aged couple (he is a Royal Navy reservist, too — that’ll rattle the weedier case workers!). “Help! We’ve sent East European children to a house where people oppose unchecked EU immigration! What might they be saying over the milk and biscuits? Will they tell them to go home? Forbid them from nursery rhymes in Romanian/Bulgarian/ Polish/Croatian/Slovene/whatever? Force them to sing Rule, Britannia! every morning?”
Melanie Phillips writes:
…there is nothing racist about opposing multiculturalism. Indeed, many immigrants themselves oppose it. To damn this couple in this way is an appalling smear…he needs of vulnerable children and other social-work clients have been junked in favour of the overriding requirement to impose an ideological view of the world in which minorities can do no wrong while the majority can do no right…n Rotherham itself, the sickening sexual enslavement of under-age white girls by organised prostitution and pimping rings was largely ignored for more than two decades, in part because the abusers came overwhelmingly from Pakistani Muslim backgrounds. And for years, would-be adoptive parents have been turned down by social workers because they are deemed to be too white, too middle class or in some other way fall foul of the politically correct inquisition. All this goes far wider and deeper even than the failings of public sector professionals. The grip of the Left on our culture has meant not just that many perfectly reasonable things are now deemed to be unsayable in civilised society.
Helen Pidd tells Guardian readers:
Jane Collins insists the timing was “purely coincidental”. Yes, said Ukip’s candidate for Thursday’s Rotherham byelection, it was something of a boon that the party had received so much publicity after it emerged that Rotherham council had removed three young children from their foster parents because the couple were members of her party. But it was not a classic case of cynical news management. “Obviously we’re getting insinuations now that this is something we’ve made public to hijack the byelection and that absolutely is not true,” she said on Sunday… a traffic warden, who said she could not be named because she was employed by the council, admitted she had voted Ukip in the recent police and crime commissioner election. “And as I did I looked up and told my dad I was sorry,” she said. “He was a lifelong Labour supporter and would be turning in his grave.” She still thought Labour would win. “You could put a red rosette on a pig and they’d vote for it in Rotherham.”
It was a phrase rolled out time and again all over the South Yorkshire town, sometimes with a donkey or a monkey substituted for the pig.
A glance at Rotherham’s voting history explains the cynicism. Almost 80 unbroken years of Labour, ending with an 18-year stint enjoyed by Denis MacShane, the former Europe minister who resigned in disgrace after fiddling his expenses.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission’ Chief executive Mark Hammond said:
“Misguided ideas about multiculturalism, which appear in this case to have led to a refusal to allow people to foster children solely because they are members of Ukip, are not only potentially detrimental to the welfare of the children but could also be a breach of the parents’ human right to freedom of expression and political opinion.”
The three children removed are young. One’s a baby. We don’t know their names, but if you see East European waving Union Flags be very afraid…