William Eichler 01 July 2019

Council chiefs warn of ‘children’s mental health crisis’

Local authority leaders have warned that social services are seeing more than 560 cases of children with mental health disorders every day – an increase of more than 50% in just four years.

The latest figures published by the Local Government Association (LGA) show there were 205,720 cases where a child was identified as having a mental health issue in 2017/18, compared with 133,600 in 2014/15.

Ahead of the LGA’s Annual Conference in Bournemouth this week, council chiefs are warning of a ‘children’s mental health crisis’ and calling on the Government to inject some cash into children’s services.

Over the past decade, councils have lost 60p out of every £1 they had from central Government to run services.

This slashing of budgets has hit children’s services, which face a £3.1bn funding gap by 2025. Public health services, which support a child’s early development, have also seen cuts of £700m over the last five years.

These cuts have forced nine in 10 councils to overspend their children’s social care budgets.

According to the LGA, there are currently 75,420 children in the care of councils. Since 2010, local authorities have also overseen a 84% increase of children on child protection plans.

‘Councils strive to make sure that every child gets the best start in life and is able to go on and live a healthy, safe and prosperous life,’ Cllr Anntoinette Bramble, chair of the LGA’s Children and Young People Board.

‘It is clear we are facing a children’s mental health crisis, and councils are struggling to provide the support young people so desperately need.’

‘Significant funding pressures in children’s services and public health mean many councils are being forced to cut some of the vital early intervention services which can support children with low level mental health issues and avoid more serious problems in later life,’ she continued.

‘It is absolutely vital that the Government adequately funds these services in this year’s Spending Review, so we can tackle this urgent crisis and make sure children get the help they need.

‘It is the least they deserve and the consequences of not tackling this crisis now can be devastating for young people and their families.’

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Street Works and Permitting Officer

Lincolnshire County Council
£26,466 - £29,174
Are you an experienced Highways Engineer who wants to make a difference to how Street Works are managed. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Revenues Officer x5

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£31,122 - £32,112
The Revenues Service currently has vacancies for Revenues Officers. Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Secondary Reintegration Officer

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£31,122 - £32,112
Children and young people are at the heart of everything we do at the Borough of Royal Greenwich. Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Deputy Director of Housing

City of Wolverhampton Council
£97,896
Could you lead on the strategic housing agenda, delivering strong leadership and effective management? Wolverhampton, West Midlands
Recuriter: City of Wolverhampton Council

Senior Health Improvement Officer

Leicestershire County Council
£42,552
Leicestershire County Council is looking to recruit a dynamic public health professional to join the Health Improvement Team. Leicestershire
Recuriter: Leicestershire County Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.