'Extenuating circumstances' around missing children in Waltham Forest Council's care

East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Waltham Forest Council Waltham Forest Council

The circumstances surrounding the disappearance of five young people in care make the role of Waltham Forest Council "difficult and challenging", according to the authority.

A report released by the London Assembly Liberal Democrat Group revealed that the borough has the joint highest number of children missing from care in London.

Caroline Pidgeon, who was behind the report, said the figures revealed a city-wide scandal, although a third of councils refused to respond to the Freedom of Information Act request.

A spokesman for the council said: “Waltham Forest Council takes extremely seriously the well-being of the children and young people in its care and is committed to ensuring  their safety at all times.

“One missing child is one too many, but at the same time this report – which by its own admission only paints a limited picture of the problem across London given that a third of boroughs did not respond – fails to provide any context around the five missing children and young people in Waltham Forest that were reported as a snapshot on the particular day in question.

“Two of these children are suspected to have travelled to Pakistan with their father and the other three are all young people (17, 18 and 19) that have previously sought asylum before going missing.”

He added that it is the view of Waltham Forest council officers that these are "extenuating circumstances".

“Both sets of circumstances do not make the safety of these individuals any less important, but do point to some of the extenuating circumstances that both influence their actions and make the role of the local authority difficult and challenging,” He said.

The council has also denied it has only been recording the number of missing children since 2010.

The spokesman said the time it would take to provide the information meant the authority was not required to meet the request.

Comments (6)

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4:49pm Mon 14 Apr 14

GarethCheeseman says...

Poor sub-editing here. The headline implies that the children may have left the country as a result of having been criticised by the Lib Dems. I
Poor sub-editing here. The headline implies that the children may have left the country as a result of having been criticised by the Lib Dems. I GarethCheeseman
  • Score: 10

5:06pm Mon 14 Apr 14

Villagecranberry says...

So 'at risk' children failed by parents are further failed by their guardians namely the sham olio Labour Council who do not have a clue where they are.

Could be anywhere. These kis lost in an incompetent system where politics are played over the health and safety of the most vulnerable.

Absolute disgrace and it is no wonder that the likes of Victoria Climbie and Baby P, never stood a chance with lefty Council's 'looking after and minding' them.
So 'at risk' children failed by parents are further failed by their guardians namely the sham olio Labour Council who do not have a clue where they are. Could be anywhere. These kis lost in an incompetent system where politics are played over the health and safety of the most vulnerable. Absolute disgrace and it is no wonder that the likes of Victoria Climbie and Baby P, never stood a chance with lefty Council's 'looking after and minding' them. Villagecranberry
  • Score: -6

5:06pm Mon 14 Apr 14

Villagecranberry says...

So 'at risk' children failed by parents are further failed by their guardians namely the sham olio Labour Council who do not have a clue where they are.

Could be anywhere. These kis lost in an incompetent system where politics are played over the health and safety of the most vulnerable.

Absolute disgrace and it is no wonder that the likes of Victoria Climbie and Baby P, never stood a chance with lefty Council's 'looking after and minding' them.
So 'at risk' children failed by parents are further failed by their guardians namely the sham olio Labour Council who do not have a clue where they are. Could be anywhere. These kis lost in an incompetent system where politics are played over the health and safety of the most vulnerable. Absolute disgrace and it is no wonder that the likes of Victoria Climbie and Baby P, never stood a chance with lefty Council's 'looking after and minding' them. Villagecranberry
  • Score: -9

10:09pm Mon 14 Apr 14

Sam Hain says...

I wonder if our recent borough delegation looked in Azad Jammu and Kashmir?
I wonder if our recent borough delegation looked in Azad Jammu and Kashmir? Sam Hain
  • Score: 6

7:53am Tue 15 Apr 14

Villagecranberry says...

Yes the extenuating circumstances are that they had the misfortune to have Labour Waltham Forest Council as their Guardian and the UK No Border Agency are as incompetent as the Council.
Yes the extenuating circumstances are that they had the misfortune to have Labour Waltham Forest Council as their Guardian and the UK No Border Agency are as incompetent as the Council. Villagecranberry
  • Score: -9

10:14am Tue 15 Apr 14

mdj says...

Another anonymous spokesman: do we employ secret agents in this Borough?
Is there no elected councillor with responsibility for this area of concern?
Another anonymous spokesman: do we employ secret agents in this Borough? Is there no elected councillor with responsibility for this area of concern? mdj
  • Score: 2

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