Calls for resignations over South Yorkshire fostering row

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A SOUTH Yorkshire couple who had three children removed from their care because of their political allegiance are calling for council leaders to consider resigning after they failed to apologise.

The foster carers, in their 50s, claim Rotherham Council removed the Eastern European youngsters from their care after discovering they were members of the UK Independence Party and raising concerns over the party’s stance on immigration. Officials had concerns that the children’s ‘cultural and ethnic needs’ would not be met.

But the carers, who have been fostering for around seven years, said they would not have taken on the youngsters - a baby girl, a boy and an older girl from an ethnic minority background - if they were racist.

They now want Rotherham Council chiefs to ‘consider their positions’ after the decision to remove children received widespread condemnation from across the political spectrum.

The council has pledged full support to an inquiry ordered by Education Secretary Michael Gove, but council leader Roger Stone has offered no apology.

The foster parents, who have had bought Christmas presents for the three children, said they felt ‘slandered and besmirched’ after social workers took them away.

“Social workers told us the policies UKIP expressed were known as racist and that caused a safeguarding issue,” said the husband.

“These are people who are paid to make responsible decisions. It’s completely baffling that they just can’t put their hands up. They should be considering their positions.”

The foster mother, a nursery nurse, said: “These children have now gone to other white, presumably British, couples. The only difference therefore is that these other people are not linked to UKIP.

“You are only human and you do love these children. I went from having a baby in my arms to having nothing.

“I want an apology from officials. How can politics be an issue - all the children want is to be nurtured and loved.”

She added: “We wouldn’t have taken these children from an ethnic minority on if we had been racist. We grew up Labour voters but joined UKIP as we agreed with getting out of Europe.”