Wigan mum launches child abduction passport petition

Children|Divorce|News|June 17th 2013

Manchester AirportA Wigan mother who fought a two year battle to regain custody of her daughter has launched a campaign aimed at making international abduction more difficult.

Sarah Taylor, from Hindley Green in Greater Manchester, was reunited with daughter Nadia, then six, in December 2009, two and a half years after the girl had been abducted into Libya by her father Fawzi Abu Arghub.

The 36 year old mother now wants the government to introduce a check on children’s passports to prevent international abductions.

In a new e-petition she writes:

“Each year 500 British children are taken out of the UK by a non-UK parent or relative against the wishes of the British parent. We are asking that the Government put in place a ‘stop’ system at ports and exit points to ensure emigration checks against UK children’s status to prevent abduction. British parents who are concerned about possible abduction should be able to register their concerns and have this ‘stop’ put against their child’s passport which would deter and prevent exit at UK ports.”

Taylor told Wigan Today:

“More children are going missing every year and the problem is increasing. Something needs to be put in place to stop our children leaving the country. I want to be able to place stop notices at airports, especially if there’s been a breakdown in a marriage. I’ve been through this myself and it’s not a nice thing to have done so I’m just trying to raise as much attention as I can.”

Local MP Andy Burnham was involved with the campaign to find Nadia and has now promised to raise the passport proposal with Home Secretary Theresa May.

He said:

“The ease with which Nadia left Manchester Airport is troubling, and this proposes a simple strategy which I think is achievable and would give huge reassurance to parents.”

Photo of Manchester Airport by lucidtech via Wikipedia under a Creative Commons licence 

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. Guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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  1. michelle jatta says:

    i really admire this lady and her mp for trying to raise this question, i have done this my self to theresa may direct and she could not even be bothered to wrtie back her self she got someone on her behalf. also sean felton has tried to no avail, do you know i was told report back a number of years ago concluded the out checks not effetcive if they want to get in touch for more info please feel free to contact me

  2. Observer says:

    You have to wonder about the double standards though when a mother abducts a child and cites protection and remains unpunished, while a father might do it for protection but gets jailed for abduction.

    It’s well known that mother’s always get their children back from abducting fathers but fathers never get their children back from abducting mothers. In fact, Britain sanctions maternal abduction; it has a name: leave to remove.

    If you want to raise questions about this, that’s great, but please do so with the interests of children in mind, not in the interests of one gender alone, thanks.

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