Moscow accused of 'plundering' Ukraine
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A British expat who has turned his Polish castle into a hotel for Ukrainian refugees has slammed the Government as an “absolute disgrace” for not allowing a severely autistic teenager to come to live with an approved foster carer in the UK, the Guardian has revealed. Ex-stockbroker and writer Jim Parton, originally from London, lives in the once-private palace of the Prince-Bishop of Wroclaw in Piotrowice Nyskie. The village, which is located near the Czech border, is very small and has a population of around 300 people, including Mr Parton, his Polish wife Anna and the couple’s six children.
Mr Parton is currently housing 17 people at his home, which is usually a guest house and wedding venue, including 16-year-old Timothy Tymoshenko, who fled the war in Ukraine without his parents and arrived in Poland with his 17-year-old brother Yurii.
Timothy was described by the Guardian as severely autistic, non-verbal and needs strong prescription medication to control his changing moods.
However, experienced children’s carers in Lancashire have been to visit the brothers in Poland and are willing to take them in.
They are also increasingly frustrated that the UK Government has not yet granted either of them visas to enter the country.
Julie and her husband Roger Elliot already have 14 children together, including four biologically.
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The couple worked as nurses before becoming full-time carers to their adopted family.
The Elliots even received MBEs in 2016 for services to children.
According to the Guardian, the couple’s adopted children, aged between nine and 40, all have disabilities and eight of them still live at the couple’s Ribble Valley home.
However, the Elliots and Partons are pleading with the Home Office to let Timothy and his brother come to the UK.
Mr Parton said: “It’s an absolute disgrace that it is taking so long.
“There’s no humanity whatsoever from the government in recognising that this is a special case.”
Ms Elliot added: “What makes me most cross is the safeguarding reason for delaying visas for these children.”
She also claimed: “Tim needs someone to care for him to ensure he eats and drinks regularly.”
However, the pair do not currently qualify for the Homes for Ukraine scheme as unaccompanied children under 18.
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But the issue is also subject to a high court challenge as UK foster carers anxiously wait to see if approval can be granted for children they hope to care for.
A Government spokesperson said: “It is tragic that children have been caught up in Putin’s war.
“The safety and wellbeing of children is paramount and it is vital we have robust safeguarding processes.
“For this reason, only under-18s who are reuniting with a parent or legal guardian in the UK are currently eligible for Homes for Ukraine.
“We keep eligibility for all schemes under review.”
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