- By Joshua Keating
Joshua Keating is associate editor at Foreign Policy and the editor of the Passport blog. He has worked as a researcher, editorial assistant, and deputy Web editor since joining the FP staff in 2007. In addition to being featured in Foreign Policy, his writing has been published by the Washington Post, Newsweek International, Radio Prague, the Center for Defense Information, and Romania's Adevarul newspaper. He has appeared as a commentator on CNN International, C-Span, ABC News, Al Jazeera, NPR, BBC radio, and others. A native of Brooklyn, New York, he studied comparative politics at Oberlin College.
The U.K. Independence Party may espouse some extreme positions — some of its elected members have stated their belief that the EU is exporting a "Marxist revolution" to Britain — but should membership in the party disqualify parents from adopting foster children? That’s what recently happened in the city of Rotherham:
The foster parents say "no discussions" took place between them and the council prior to the children’s removal.
The children – who are European migrants – were removed by social workers who accused the unnamed couple of belonging to a "racist party".
Council leader Roger Stone said it was launching an immediate investigation.
The BBC understands that the three children are all under 10 and one is a baby.
Council leader Roger Stone said it was launching an immediate investigation
The UKIP favors a five-year freeze on immigration, cuts to benefits for new arrivals, and an end to state-sponsored efforts to promote multiculturalism, so it is perhaps a little surprising that members of the party would be interested in adopting non-British children..
That said, the parents claim to have been sensitive to their children’s needs — finding a religious school for one of them, and encouraging them to speak their native language and there’s no evidence — at least from the media coverage so far — that the children were mistreated in any way.
The case is a bit reminiscent of last year’s story of a New Jersey couple who lost custody of their (biological) children, Adolf Hitler Campbell, JoyceLynn Aryan Nation Campbell and Honszlynn Hinler Jeannie Campbell. Of course, in that case there were other causes for concern for the children’s welfare other than the names, and the UKIP — whatever you think of their positions — are certainly not Nazis: they have 12 seats in the European Parliament.
There seems to be pretty widespread agreement that this was serious overreach on the council’s part and the British education secretary has called the children’s removal "indefensible".