Report on fostering row handed to council chiefs

Roger Stone, leader of Rotherham Council
Roger Stone, leader of Rotherham Council
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AN internal report has been handed to Rotherham Council chiefs as staff try to explain a decision by social workers to remove three children from their foster home because their carers are members of UKIP.

Bosses ordered an explanation for the move at the same time the Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove, called for an investigation.

Rotherham Council has been criticised after it emerged a couple who have been fostering for seven years had three Eastern European children removed from their care because they are members of UKIP.

The council told the couple there were concerns over UKIP’s stance on immigration and their ability to meet the cultural needs of the youngsters.

Yesterday Coun Roger Stone, Leader of Rotherham Council, said: “I received a report of the immediate investigation ordered early on Saturday by the Cabinet Member for Children’s Services.

“As we said on Saturday, membership of UKIP should not bar someone from fostering.

“The council places the highest priority on safeguarding children and our overriding concern in all decisions about the children in our care, is for their best interests.

“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.’’

The dad at the centre of the row said: “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.”