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IICSA Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

Child Migration Programmes Investigation Report

The Outfits and Maintenance agreements, 1957 onwards

69. The Ross report recommendation in respect of the Home Secretary’s consent being required for migration by voluntary societies was not implemented by HMG. However as a consequence of the Ross report,[1] Outfits and Maintenance agreements were first signed between the Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations and various organisations (at least the Fairbridge Society, Barnardo’s and the Salvation Army) in 1957.[2] 

70. These agreements included requirements that:

a. children should travel with information about themselves; 

b. staffing levels and experience should be appropriate (including that staff “shall be as far as possible persons with knowledge and experience of child care methods”);

c. children should be boarded out wherever possible;

d. children should only be sent to private homes that were suitable in all respects;

e. children should be encouraged to take part in the life of the community; and

f. that an adequate standard of comfort should be maintained.

71. The agreements also expected voluntary societies to provide information on various matters to the Secretary of State, to give access to related records, and to co-operate with the Secretary of State “in enabling him to satisfy himself from time to time” that the provisions were being observed. We understand that the agreements with other agencies were in similar form and note copies from 1962 regarding the Catholic Church and NCH.[3] 

The wording of these agreements demonstrates a continued acceptance that child migrants should be cared for in accordance with the Curtis principles.



  1. EWM000278_229-231.
  2. For Barnardo’s see CRD000034_121; for the Fairbridge Society see PRT000028_009-011; and for the Salvation Army see SVA000036_035.
  3. CHC000533_002-012; AFC000023.
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