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ADCS response to the Queen’s Speech

Jenny Coles, ADCS Vice President, said:

“It’s disappointing that the Queen’s speech did not provide long term solutions to many issues affecting children and families today, such as child poverty. For almost four years now ‘Brexit’ has consumed the time, focus and energy of national politicians at the expense of addressing some serious domestic social policy issues. We would urge the government to put children and families at the top of their agenda.

“We are pleased the government has reiterated its commitment to providing £1 billion for children’s and adult social care next year, however, three times this amount is needed to plug the funding gap children’s services will soon face. Without proper and sustainable investment in children and the services they rely on we are only storing up huge human and fiscal costs for the future.

“On serious youth violence, the government has reaffirmed its commitment to placing a duty on public bodies to collaborate, this duty already exists for children and is the basis of our safeguarding system. Moreover, the measures outlined in the speech do nothing to address the reasons why a young person might carry a knife or why some children are more at risk of being drawn into criminality. Evidence demonstrates a clear link between inequality and high rates of violence.

“It is right that all young people have access to an excellent education and any additional funding for schools is welcome. But beyond funding there are many barriers to achieving a high performing and inclusive education system including rising numbers of learners being excluded from schools, curriculum reforms, increased accountability and a high stakes inspection regime that must be addressed.

“We are pleased the government has committed to progressing the Domestic Abuse Bill, however, the proposals as they stand must focus more on prevention and clearly reflect the scale, reach or severity of this issue. Domestic abuse affects millions of men, women and children each year, our own research shows it is the most common reason why children come to the attention of children’s social care. If we are to turn the tide of this endemic problem, we must work with children and families at risk of domestic abuse as well as with perpetrators to prevent domestic abuse from occurring in the first place.”

ENDS



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