Comment on National Transfer Scheme Announcement

Responding to the changes to the National Transfer Scheme announced today, Steve Crocker, ADCS President said:

“Local authorities are working hard to care for the thousands of unaccompanied asylum seeking children, along with those who are now over 18 and care leavers, who have been settled across the country via the National Transfer Scheme (NTS). It is vital that children who arrive here alone get the support they need at the right time, yet the system is under increasing pressure so we need a sustainable and systemic solution to these challenges. ADCS is committed to working with the Department for Education and the Home Office to achieve this.

“ADCS recognise the need to transfer young people out of hotels as soon as possible, into appropriate placements, however, the placements just do not exist. We have been highlighting for some time the placement sufficiency challenge that needs urgent national attention as well as the increasing costs of placements and profiteering from the care of vulnerable children. The changes that have been announced today, including increasing the threshold at which a local authority can make referrals to the NTS from 0.07% to 0.1%, and reducing the transfer deadline to five working days, do nothing to address the many pressing and longstanding pressures in the system that we continue to raise with government. For example, the inadequacy of the funding arrangements for care leavers and finding appropriate homes for children when they arrive here. This must be seen in the context of other pressures facing local authorities including an increase in the general care population as well as the other schemes in place to welcome refugees and unaccompanied children.”


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