LONDON (AP) – Britain’s education secretary says he will investigate how local officials removed three children from their foster family because of concerns about the parents’ political beliefs.
The Rotherham borough council sparked criticism Saturday when it was revealed that its social workers removed the children, who are European migrants, because their foster parents are members of the right-wing U.K. Independence Party.
The party wants Britain to withdraw from the EU and favors immigration curbs. Social workers said they were concerned that the children’s “cultural and ethnic needs” may not be met in the foster family.
Education Secretary Michael Gove condemned the decision as arbitrary and indefensible, saying that political beliefs should not stop anyone from fostering children.
Rotherham is near Manchester.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)