Daily Mail 
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
A couple who applied to raise their adopted son’s half-sister have been rejected as suitable parents – because they believe in smacking.
The couple, named only as Mr and Mrs A, adopted a boy in 2003 and applied to adopt his younger sister, who is still a toddler.
But the High Court heard the couple were told by their local council they were ‘unsuitable candidates’ after admitting smacking their son.
High Court judge Mr Justice Bennett heard that Mr A had admitted smacking his son for using the F-word, after previously telling social workers that he didn’t believe in corporal punishment.
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Other concerns over the family’s finances, Mr and Mrs A’s ‘behaviour management’ and their ability to differentiate between adoption and foster caring, led to their rejection as adopters for the little girl in June this year.
Now Mr and Mrs A have launched a judicial review challenge against London’s Newham Council at London’s High Court in a bid to overturn the decision.
Their barrister, Deirdre Fottrell, told Mr Justice Bennett that their human rights had been violated, as well as those of their son, who now won’t get the chance to grow up with his half-sister.
Ms Fottrell added that Mr and Mrs A were ‘experienced’ foster parents, who had frequently been approved to foster children from all over London by a private agency.
He said Newham Council had rejected a ‘substantial body of evidence’ which supported their credentials and had failed to give ‘adequate reasons’ for its decision.
In January 2008, Mr and Mrs A were rejected as foster carers, only for an Independent Review Panel to back their case in May.
But the Panel’s recommendation was not enough to persuade the council to reverse its decision.
Full story here.