Foster row couple threaten to sue

Rotherham Town Hall, Moorgate
Rotherham Town Hall, Moorgate

FOSTER carers who had children removed because they supported UKIP are considering suing Rotherham Council over accusations they leaked information about the youngsters.

The foster carers, in their 50s, claim the 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.

They have said that they will now take legal action after their foster agency said the council had accused them of leaking information to the press about their children and birth parents.

The couple deny releasing confidential details and fear the allegations could prevent them from fostering again.

The couple said: “The accusation we understand is now being levelled by Rotherham Council - namely we have breached confidentiality - can be a career-ending accusation for foster parents.”

“We wish to repeat and formally state that at no time have we given confidential information to the press and have, repeatedly and from the outset, asked the press to respect the confidentiality of the children and ourselves.”

“This is entirely for the protection of these children, who are innocent victims in what we see as the outrageous attitudes of Rotherham social services.”

“Whatever fears Rotherham Council may have surrounding the children’s future, wanting the best outcome for these children does not justify them, or any local council, slandering their foster carers or abruptly removing children because the foster carers are members of UKIP.”

“If Rotherham Council is accusing us of a breach of confidentiality and does not issue a formal apology in order to clear our name we may be forced to seek legal action to protect our future as foster parents.”

UKIP said it will back the couple’s legal action.

A UKIP spokesman said, while the party would ‘entirely support any legal case, the party hopes Rotherham Council will back down and do the decent thing and apologise’.

Council leader Coun Roger Stone did not want to comment further about the case, pending the outcome of an internal investigation.

A council spokesman said: “Their future employment as foster carers is a matter for the agency which employs them.”