The row that has broken out over Rotherham Council’s decision to take three foreign born children away from the couple who were fostering them because they were members of UKIP has certainly hit a public nerve. It’s a huge story not just in the tabloids but also the broadsheets and even the BBC, usually keen to avoid portraying UKIP in a sympathetic light, has been leading with it.
Initially the Labour controlled council stonewalled with pravdaesque blandness
Joyce Thacker, the council’s Director of Children and Young People’s Services, had earlier toured radio and television studios to defend the decision, saying the children had been removed in order to protect their “cultural and ethnic needs”.
But even boneheaded Labour apparatchiks can sometimes sniff the shifting of a public mood and are now promising a review of the decision.
Of course this is not the first time that Rotherham Council has been at the centre of a row over the care of children. It has been claimed that, as in Rochdale, over sensitivity towards “cultural” issues explained why for years the issue of Asian men grooming and exploiting young girls for sex was pushed under the carpet for fear of being accused of “racism” or “islamophobia”
Now Joyce Thacker has some form here as well – see how she contorted herself to avoid committing the deadliest sin of the church of political correctness…
Joyce Thacker, the strategic director of the children and young people’s services directorate at Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, has a vast amount of experience in dealing with sexual exploitation of young people. She says that it is “interesting” to note that most of the men involved are Asian but that it is primarily an issue of the abuse of children by older men.
“What about the younger boys who are sent to befriend the girls in the first place?” says Thacker, “Are they also victims of abuse? Certainly we need to ensure that more work is done within all communities that explores positive, healthy relationships, or these young men may end up being the abusers themselves.”
However it could be that as more stones are being turned over as a result of this UKIP story Joyce Thacker and the Rotherham’s Labour political elite might be having to answer a lot more questions….