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England and Wales High Court (Family Division) Decisions
You are here: BAILII >> Databases >> England and Wales High Court (Family Division) Decisions >> C, D & E (Radicalisation: Welfare)  EWHC 3088 (Fam) (25 October 2016)
Cite as:  EWHC 3088 (Fam)
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LEEDS DISTRICT REGISTRY
B e f o r e :
Re C, D and E (Radicalisation: Welfare)
Charlotte Worsley (instructed by Chivers Walsh Family Law Solicitors) for the Mother (A)
Lewis Donnelly (instructed by Lumb & MacGill) for the Father (B)
Clare Garnham & Amanda Palfreman (instructed by Finn Gledhill) for the Children's Guardian (C, D, E and F)
Hearing dates: 25 October 2016
Crown Copyright ©
The Honourable Mr. Justice Cobb:
i) The reports of Mr. Rashad Ali and his colleague, Ms Masieh;
ii) Social work statements, and a detailed parenting assessment undertaken by the social workers; the placement agreements drafted under the Placement of Children with Parents Regulations 1991;
iii) Multiple statements of the parents;
iv) The Child in Need plans;
v) The analysis of the Children's Guardian.
i) Within a short time of the judgment, the parents filed evidence to set out their reactions to the findings. The parents both confirmed that they accepted the findings of the court, and wished to find ways of working with the local authority openly and co-operatively to ensure that the concerns are addressed; the father said that he was beginning (as at February 2016) to accept that "many of the things I said and did were not appropriate and not a true expression of Islam … I cannot fully explain why I allowed myself to get drawn into radical extreme thinking"; the mother accepted that "the views I expressed …were wrong";
ii) Generally, the parents have indeed worked cooperatively with the Local Authority within the tight 'contract of expectations' entered into with the social services department; the Local Authority has supported the family financially given the children's 'looked after' status; the social workers have visited the family at least every 28 days, and have had ready access to the children who appear well cared for and about whom there have been no welfare concerns;
iii) In April 2016 I approved the removal of the electronic tag from the mother, and from the father later in June; the Ministry of Justice, without prejudice to its position in other cases, agreed to fund the costs of the same until these dates;
iv) The parents' passports have been revoked under the Royal Prerogative;
v) A fourth child (F) was born to these parents in the summer; that baby is not the subject of any public law order;
vi) Work was undertaken with C and D in building their resilience to developing radicalised ideologies and beliefs;
vii) The parents faced charges of fraud arising from the events which I described in my earlier judgement; there was a delay in the publication of that judgment while the criminal process resolved.
Counter Extremism Consultancy Training Research and Interventions
i) The legitimacy and Islamic authority of the Islamic State; its actions in violation of Islamic normative teachings for warfare;
ii) The parents' beliefs on 'takfir' and ex-communication, the notion of jihad and the sanctity of civilian life, the difference between Islamic state conception of governance and classical conceptions of religious and legal pluralism;
iii) The parents' understanding of the difference between extremist beliefs and Islamic normative beliefs around theologically justified reasons for political rebellion, religious ethics of warfare versus extremist violations of jus ad bellum, elaboration on diversity within the Islamic tradition and pluralism, and the rule of law;
iv) Grievances, and the importance of expressing legitimate grievances through societal norms and legal boundaries.
He gave guidance and support to the parents to assist them to reintegrate within both their local communities and their Muslim communities, and in relation to receiving support from mainstream services; he has also considered with the father ways of facilitating his return to work. These pieces of work reflect the fact that the parents have felt increasingly isolated in the community as a result – as they see it – of the intervention of the social care agency.
"The parents' recognition and acknowledgement that they have associated with, and supported, groups that espouse extremist viewpoints, and that they have posted such views themselves on social media is a big step forward in comparison with their views prior to the fact-finding hearing. It is this willingness to explore and discuss their views that has led to Mr Ali making a largely positive and optimistic assessment of their capacity to change. They are to be commended for taking these first steps but as Mr Ali says, they continue to be susceptible to extremist views and further work and education is required.… He states that the parents' overall vulnerability for engagement in extremist thought processes and activities continues to be strong and that they continue to search for identity and meaning in their world view."
i) The parents have been and are now genuine in their claims that they reject, wholeheartedly, their previous ideological beliefs. They reject the foundations of these ideas and beliefs of the Islamic State as an ideological project;
ii) He considers that the parents present a low flight risk;
iii) There is no evidence that the parents had been indoctrinating their children, C and D;
iv) The parents demonstrated apparent resilience to extreme ideology.
Mr. Ali undertook certain focused work with C, at the conclusion of which he reported that C did not have strong ideological engagements although expressed some grievances about racism and attitudes he found at school; he knew very little about extremist groups or ideology. Mr Ali did not see him having any major vulnerability that would be identified as being abnormal for a young person of his ethnic and socio-economic background.
Welfare considerations concerning the children
Publication of the judgments