Britain’s biggest children’s charity was at the epicentre of a storm after it suggested parents and grandparents should teach youngsters about white privilege.
Barnardo’s was reported to the official charity regulator after Tory MPs argued that its political activism could be incompatible with its charitable status.
The attack came from a dozen MPs, including ex-Tory Cabinet Minister Esther McVey who spent four years in a Barnardo’s home and she told a newspaper outlet she was extremely disturbed by the charity’s guidance, saying it was a misguided and misjudged move away from what the charity is about and what it ought to be doing.
The intervention by the Tory MPs comes after Equalities Minister Kemi Badenoch said in October that teaching youngsters about white privilege and their inherited racial guilt could be breaking the law.
However, the charity hit back, with vice president Dr David Barnardo saying the organisation couldn’t be colour blind and that black, Asian and minority ethnic children encounter additional challenges.
The row centres on new guidance from Barnado’s entitled ‘White privilege – a guide for parents.’ And posted online a few weeks ago, it states that they believe educating children about white privilege is a part of teaching them about the world, and so is talking to them about how to be actively anti-racist.
It added that you might have heard the term white privilege before and that it was extremely common across the pond in the United States, and they said that you might also think that it doesn’t exist in the United Kingdom, but that racism is extremely real here too.
More than a dozen Tory MPs, including Sir John Hayes, chairman of the Commons Sense group at Westminster, wrote to Barnardo’s chief executive Javed Khan warning that they’d asked Charity Commission chairman Baroness Stowell to investigate whether this departure into political activism was compatible with Barnardo’s noble purpose and charitable status.
They added that they were extremely saddened to learn that Barnardo’s of all organisations should have permitted ideological dogma to replace the kindness and generosity which, for many years, Barnardo’s has been known for.
They said that the ludicrous idea that privilege or prejudice was the sole preserve of a particular ethnic group is as spiteful as it is silly.
We should stop all this rubbish and treat all children the same, no matter what colour or status, because every child is equal and what we should be doing is allowing these children to grow up and we should as a society be teaching these children to be good, always.
This white privilege garbage is the best model of discrimination you can get and our Government needs to step in and remove charitable status from organisations like this who are brainwashing children.
Barnardo’s, formerly Dr Barnardo’s Homes was established by Thomas John Barnardo, a Victorian philanthropist who was concerned to make provisions for the needs of the poor, in part by saving children from disadvantaged families.
His thinking was revolutionary at the time because he didn’t differentiate between the deserving and the undeserving poor, and instead had a policy that no disadvantaged child should ever be refused admission to one of his homes (the ever open door policy).
As a contemporary children’s charity, Barnardo’s works with some of the most vulnerable children and young people in the country, and in 2015-2016 helped 248,000 children, young people, parents and carers through 996 different services across the United Kingdom.
However, Barnardo’s had a huge role in child migration where it migrated very large numbers of children to Canada from the mid-late 1880s: 946 from 1866 to 1881 and 29,076 from 1882 to 1939.
It also migrated 502 children to Australia before 1921 and 1,840 from 1921 to 1945 and post-war Barnardo’s migrated children solely to Australia, 442 in total.
Children were migrated by Barnardo’s to Canada in large sailing groups.
From 1920 they were accompanied by a Mr and Mrs Hobday.
They stayed at Barnardo’s institutions in Ontario for an initial period before taking up occupation as agricultural workers or domestic servants on farms.
Children migrated by Barnardo’s to Australia were placed initially at Fairbridge Pinjarra school and from 1928 to 1929, Barnardo’s established its own farm school at Mowbray Park, near Picton, NSW. A home at Normanhurst, NSW, a home for girls at Burwood, NSW, and several smaller homes were subsequently established.
In or sometime before 1889, Alfred Owen, who ran Barnardo’s receiving home in Canada, was convicted of sexual interference with girls in is care – Barnardo’s in the United Kingdom became aware of this.
In 1955, a Picton housemaster was dismissed on the grounds of suspicion of indiscreet fondling of boys at the school. The extent of which Barnardo’s in the United Kingdom was made aware of this particular incident at the time is not clear.
On 30 May 1958 Barnardo’s Australia’s Tom Price raised concerns that 23 boys mostly aged between 18 and 21 were possible victims of serious sexual malpractices at Picton.
An ex-sports master, two poultry farmers, a Barnardo’s old boy, a herd testing officer and two former housemasters, including the one dismissed in 1955 were suspected as perpetrators over several years.
Concerns were also raised about boys at Normanhurst and boys in employment – Barnardo’s in the United Kingdom became aware of this.
Margaret Humphrey, CBE, AO was a social worker from Nottingham, England and worked for Nottingham County Council working around Radford, Nottingham and Hyson Green in child protection and adoption services.
In 1986 she received a letter from a woman in Australia who, believing she was an orphan, was looking to find her birth certificate so she could get married.
In 1987, Margaret Humphrey’s investigated and brought to public attention the British government programme of Home Children.
This involved forcibly migrating poor British children to Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the former Rhodesia and other parts of the Commonwealth of Nations, often without their parent’s knowledge.
Children were frequently told their parents had died, and parents were told their children had been placed for adoption elsewhere in the United Kingdom.
According to Margaret Humphreys, up to 150,000 children are thought to have been relocated under the scheme, some as young as three and about 7,000 of whom were sent to Australia.
Saving money was one of the motives behind this policy and children were allegedly deported because it was more affordable to care for them overseas.
It cost an estimated £5 per day to keep a child on welfare in a British institution, but only 10 per cent of that, ten shillings, in an Australian one.
Margaret Humphrey’s investigations led to the exposure of the child migration scheme in two major articles by Annabel Ferriman in the Observer newspaper in July 1987 and the establishment of the Child Migrants Trust, originally funded by Nottingham County Council, her employer, and later by the British and Australian governments, and constituted by the British and Australian governments, and constituted as a registered charity under English law.
The trust was later established as an incorporated body to comply with Australian regulations and opened offices in Melbourne and Perth.
The primary aims of the Trust were to help former British child migrants to reclaim their identity and to reunite them with their parents and families.
The key feature of the work of the Child Migrants Trust has been a sustained endeavour through the mass media to create public understanding of this previously obscure chapter in the social history of all the countries involved.
Margaret Humphreys took part in the British television documentary ‘The Lost Children of the Empire’ screened in 1989 and subsequently broadcast in Australia.
A popular history book with the identical title was published to coincide with the documentary.
Its description of child migration policy starts with Britain’s early involvement which began in the 17th century when children were shipped from London to increase the population of Virginia – the first British outpost in America.
Child migration continued over the next 350 years across three continents, including North America and Africa, concluding in Australia in 1970.
In 1998, a British Parliamentary Select Committee initiated an investigation into child migration schemes, and published a report in August that year, which criticised the policy in general, particularly certain Roman Catholic institutions in Western Australia and Queensland such as the Christian Brothers where child migrants were housed and allegedly abused.
The Western Australian Legislative Assembly passed a motion on 13 August 1998 apologising to former child migrants.
In 2007, both the Queensland and Western Australia government announced redress schemes for those who as children were abused while in state care. These schemes permitted former British child migrants to apply for financial compensation if they didn’t wish to or couldn’t pursue civil litigation claims against the government.
At the end of the day, the only privileged people are those that are wealthy. These politicians tell you that they can relate to you, but there’s no way that they can.
Our only true ethnicity is mankind because we’re all connected in some kind of way.
What we should be teaching our children is to have compassion towards each other, it doesn’t have to be colourised and it makes me sad that I share a world with people that have such limited minds and outlandish opinions.
And teaching children that our skin makes have privilege over other race sounds like something Hitler would say – Sieg Heil!