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Comment on DfE children looked after statistics

Commenting on the latest children looked after statistics, ADCS President John Pearce said:

“These latest figures show the increasing pressure in which local authorities are operating as the number of children in our care continues to rise year on year. Added to this, accessing the right placements is becoming more difficult with the associated costs spiralling, partly due to increasing levels of profiteering by some private providers. Higher levels of need and risk are now being seen in children’s social care and families continue to present later, with complex, multifaceted needs which are more acute. The number of children living in poverty also continues to rise as the cost of living crisis impacts on so many families. The relationship between child poverty and involvement in children’s social care is well evidenced, but poverty is not inevitable. Day in, day out, we are working hard to support children and families but our services are stretched to beyond breaking point. ADCS will soon be publishing an update to its 2017 paper A country that works for all children and it is clear that vital issues such as poverty, children’s mental health and local government funding have had little or no progress in the intervening six years.

“It is vital that next week’s Autumn Statement provides us with the funding needed to meet this rising demand. Only through long-term national investment in early help can we ensure that children are not taken into care when they could have stayed with their family had their needs been met earlier. The government must provide the sector with a sustainable, equitable and long-term financial settlement that enables children to thrive.”

ENDS


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