Goodwill to replace Timpson as children's minister

By Neil Puffett

| 14 June 2017

Former immigration minister Robert Goodwill will replace Edward Timpson as children's minister, CYP Now understands.

Robert Goodwill is set to be appointed children's minister. Picture: Department for Transport

The Department for Education is yet to confirm the precise briefs for its ministerial team following the government reshuffle, but sources have told CYP Now that Goodwill will be given the children and families portfolio.

Goodwill, who began his career as a farmer, was first elected to parliament in 2005. Following the 2010 general election, which resulted in a coalition government made up of Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, Goodwill was made a government whip.

He went on to become a transport minister in 2013 before moving to the Home Office as an immigration minister last year.

Andy Elvin, chief executive of The Adolescent and Children's Trust (Tact), said: "Tact welcome Robert Goodwill as the new children's minister and look forward to working with him.

"We are committed to helping him forward to help him drive forward the fostering stocktake and making the care leavers covenant a meaningful set of services, support and entitlements, such as free university tuition, for our young people leaving care.

"Tact are also keen that he addresses the two-tier service that sees unaccompanied asylum seeking children disadvantaged when leaving care and hope that his experience as immigration mkinister will put him in a position of strength when negotiating with the Home Office on this issue.

Earlier this year, while immigration minister, Goodwill prompted controversy when he announced the government's intention to significantly reduce the number of lone child refugees it plans to accept from Europe under the Dubs scheme.

He said the government was taking the step because councils had run out of capacity, but local authorities blamed the situation on government under-funding.

His appointment as children's minister follows the defeat of former children's minister Edward Timpson in last week's general election. Timpson had been in post since 2012.

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