Q. How do you lose 80 children in just over two years?
A. Put them in a children’s home run by Hillingdon council.
As incredible as it may seem, that is what has happened to many of the children – mainly of Chinese origin – who have arrived unaccompanied at Heathrow Airport.
They are taken to the home, while their individual cases are investigated by officials, and they are supposed to be safe.
However, according to a confidential report written by the UK Border Agency and leaked to the Guardian newspaper two thirds of the children taken to the home disappear within a week. It is thought they are targeted by organised criminals and made to work in the sex industry or as street sellers for the drugs trade.
In the just one year, 77 children fled the centre and only four were traced; one was found to be pregnant after being forced to work in a brothel in the Midlands.
A spokesperson for Hillingdon Council tried to excuse their lamentable failure by saying;
“We cannot lock the doors because it’s a breach of their human rights”
Surely, the real breach of human rights has been the total failure of the authorities to protect these children in the first place. It seems almost unbelievable that the situation has been continuing for so long and has only now been revealed because of a leaked official report.
Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling commented:
“To have such a large number of children going missing when they are supposed to be in care is unacceptable. We need an urgent explanation from the Home Secretary”
Therein lies the problem – it’s that woman again!