Councillor – ‘takers’ from society claim

UKIP councillor is being investigated after allegedly saying to children in care they were ‘takers’ from society.

Several complaints made against Gordon Gillick after meeting with children in care where comments allegedly made • Cambridgeshire County Council says investigation is underway A UKIP councillor is under investigation after allegedly telling some children in care they must know how it feels ‘to be takers from the system’.

Several complaints have been registered against Gordon Gillick’s comments, who also allegedly demanded that the children identify what the children would ‘give back to society’. The UKIP County Councillor allegedly made the remarks in front of other Councillors who were left stunned with his remarks. Mr Gillick was one of several councillors invited to a meeting on their duties as ‘corporate parents’ to safeguard children. Some young people had made a film about their experiences in care , and were presenting it to Councillors when Mr Gillick apparently interrupted. He allegedly made remarks indicating that children in care were ‘takers’ from society, and questioned them on what they would be giving back to society, before walking out of the session. Other councillors have all lodged complaints about the conduct of Mr Gillick.

Cambridgeshire County Council reported : ‘The council has received 12 complaints against Cllr Gillick and these are under due process. The comments resonate with wider concerns about attitudes and values about children in care. Children and young people in care often experience stigma, discrimination and targeting due to their increased vulnerability, their status as looked after, and the fact they are at increased risk of emotional and physical exploitation. Corporate Parenting was a concept brought in during the last decade to describe the concept and idea that the Local Authority has a collective parenting responsibility to all the children and young people in its care – to address the lack of connection between those children and those with ultimate responsibility for them.

There were several scandals in the past decade where the responsibility of the poor standards and crises was difficult to apportion, and thus the concept of Corporate Parenting was introduced to clarify lines of and ultimate responsibility. Children and young people in care are increasing asked to make their voices heard – and Councillors have duties placed on them to connect with the children and young people they are responsible for. They also must visit them in residential homes, and take clear steps to act on concerns.

Source : Daily Mail Online