Tower Hamlets dismisses Muslim foster care concerns

family law

The London Borough of Tower Hamlets has dismissed media concerns over their decision to place a child in the care of a Muslim foster family.

The case made national headlines earlier this year with some newspapers alleging that the family only spoke Arabic and that the child, a white Christian girl, had had her crucifix necklace taken from her.

Tower Hamlets criticised the reporting of the case at the time, but launched an investigation into the claims nonetheless. This week, they released a full statement following the conclusion of their review.

Throughout the girl’s stay in foster care, her independent court-appointed guardian “raised no concerns as to the care being provided to the child” the statement read. The girl also “had frequent direct and indirect contact with her mother, [maternal grandmother] and maternal aunt as well as professionals” during this time.

Addressing the claims that the girl’s crucifix had been taken, the council’s investigation found that she “had not gone to the first placement with that crucifix” and “had most likely lost [it] before she was placed”.

Similarly, the charge that the foster family only spoke Arabic was also “found by Tower Hamlets not to be correct”. The investigation found that while the foster mother’s first language is Arabic, her husband is a white British man and their biological children’s first language is English, which was “the language of the home”.

The girl’s maternal grandmother also told the council that she had “a good relationship with the carers and is grateful for the excellent care she says that they have provided to the child”. Additionally, the girl had told her that she missed her foster family and wanted to know if she can get in touch with them.

Read the full Tower Hamlets statement here.

Photo by Matt Buck via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence.

Stowe Family Law Web Team

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