Mark Whitehead 22 December 2015

Councils demand help with the ‘huge bills’ to look after refugee children

Councils demand help with the ‘huge bills’ to look after refugee children image

Local government leaders have demanded action to help councils facing huge bills to look after refugee children.

They say a small number of port authorities are bearing the cost of caring for unnaccompanied youngsters and are calling on Whitehall to set up a 'properly funded' national body to help deal with them.

An investigation by a national newspaper revealed that just 10 councils spent £37m in the last year on 1,168 unaccompanied children fleeing war-torn countries.

David Simmonds of the Local Government Association said it was not sustainable to leave a small number of port authority councils - where asylum seekers enter the country - to take care of refugee children.

He called for a scheme similar to the one already responsible for ensuring adults are dispersed among councils nationwide.

Cllr Simmonds said: ‘Supporting vulnerable children is one of the most important things councils do, but it is not right that local authorities are left facing a significant financial burden when supporting these children.’

He added: ‘Councils are rightly proud of what unaccompanied children go on to achieve with their support, but the system needs to be properly resourced by government so that young people are not left vulnerable as a result of the complexities of national asylum policy.’

Photo: Procyk Radek /

For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Social Worker - Early Interventions

Essex County Council
£32065 - £43839 per annum
Social Worker - Early Interventions Permanent, Full Time £32,065 - £43,839 per annum Location
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Social Worker - Local Linked Support Team

Essex County Council
£32065 - £43839 per annum
This is a full time fixed term contract for 12 month or a 12 month Secondment.About the RoleThis is a community-based role within the Harlow area. You England, Essex, Epping
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Property and Projects Lawyer

Brent Council
£43,860 - £49,827 p.a. inc.(pro rata)
The successful candidate will have the opportunity to supervise junior staff and deputise in the absence of the Senior Property Lawyer. Wembley, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Training and Quality Assurance Specialist

Essex County Council
Up to £26801 per annum
The OpportunityEssex Registration Service is one of the largest authorities in the Country, serving thousands of customers in the Registration of Bir England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Business Support Officer

Camden London Borough Council
We have recently changed the way that we work so that we are more responsive to... Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue