Clause 12 - Imposition of extra conditions in certain cases

Part of Children and Adoption Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee am 12:00 pm ar 14 Mawrth 2006.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Tim Loughton Tim Loughton Shadow Minister (Children) 12:00, 14 Mawrth 2006

Again, I am keen to tease out a bit more detail. Under subsection (3),

“A person who brings, or causes another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom is guilty of an offence if any condition required to be met by virtue of subsection (1)(b) is not met.”

I want to come back to the subject of private fostering. What would stop a prospective adopter bringing a child into the country on a temporary basis, having not progressed the adoption process in the child’s original country? If that child were allowed out of his host country, what is to stop someone bringing him here on a temporary basis? Would that still constitute an offence, even though the adopter had not gone through the adoption process, which has then been curtailed because the country has been banned?

On the basis that such individuals get through immigration because the thoroughness of checks at the port of entry is left wanting and they then disappear into the ether, the child would effectively be brought up in a private fostering arrangement, because the prospective adopter could not complete the formal adoption arrangements. Alternatively, and more likely, traffickers are bringing children into the country, then placing them with private fosterers or frustrated adoptive parents who were not able to   complete an adoption from that country. I fear, as I said earlier, that we could be causing another problem by incentivising the promotion of the trafficking of children for private fostering arrangements. I would be grateful if the Minister clarified either that she is happy that that is not the case or, if it is the case, how the Government will prevent it.