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Response to HCLG Committee report on children’s services...

Rachel Dickinson, ADCS President, said:

“The Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee, like countless others, has concluded that current funding for children’s services is insufficient. There is simply not enough money in the system to meet rising need in our communities. Funding for local authorities has been halved, since 2010, although we have worked hard to protect statutory services, we have had to scale back on support for children and families that prevents their needs from escalating and reduces future demand. Rising child poverty and greater prevalence of domestic abuse, poor parental mental health and substance misuse exacerbates the pressures already in the system. It is a vicious cycle. This is unacceptable and takes us to a place we are not professionally, or morally, comfortable with and far from the principles underpinning the Children Act 1989.

“In addition to helpfully setting out a series of financial and systemic recommendations for government, the Committee recognises several factors placing further pressure on already overstretched council budgets and services. Examples include, pressures on the social work workforce, delayed Home Office decision making and a lengthy and growing list of new responsibilities, many of which are not properly funded. Moreover, our preventative duties have never been sufficiently funded to enable us to work with families earlier, addressing needs as and when they arise. We hope the Treasury is listening and is ready to put children first.”

ENDS



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