Jessica Luper 10 July 2015

Impact of council cuts 'not yet understood', warns care president

Impact of council cuts not yet understood, warns care president image

Children's care directors have issued a stark warning that the full impact of council cuts will take as long as three years to understand.

Alison O’Sullivan, president of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services (ADCS), gave an address yesterday in which she warned that the impact of recent cuts is ‘a looming crisis’ of which the implications have yet to be realised.

Suggesting a lack of foresight within the Government could cause greater long-term damage, O’Sullivan pointed out the delicate balance between investing in early help and the potential cost of late intervention.

‘I have a deep concern that the full impact of recent cuts to local authority funding are not yet well understood. Many of the changes being made are complex to implement and take time. The impact will not wash through the system for another one, two or three years. And at the same time further cuts will need to be made. There is a looming crisis in relation to our ability to keep a balance in the system between investment in early help and the costs of late intervention. Government needs to monitor this very closely and consider if steps will need to be taken to ensure we do not do irreversible damage to our ability to prevent serious harm occurring,’ she said.

The president also queried current care inspection frameworks, branding the current system ‘broken', 'discredited' and 'burdensome' and warned it ‘disproportionately consumes the resources of both the inspectors and the inspected’.

‘We must not create yet another later of inspection adding to the already unreasonable burden. Local authorities simply cannot cope with any more,’ O’Sullivan said.

Calling for greater support and compassion for those leaving care, O’Sullivan said: ‘Too often the most vulnerable of our care leavers, for that is what they are, are leaving residential care earlier than is right for them. And I firmly believe that we need the flexibility to continue to support young people for longer and in doing so we will equip them better for their future lives and try to reverse some of the poor outcomes that our care leavers experience. This is a case of us all finding a way to do the right thing, as any “good parent” would.’

Of her own role and that of the other directors, O’Sullivan made clear her feelings of great responsibility within her position, telling other service members: ‘The very nature of the role is more than just an administrative detail. When we get up in the morning and when we go to bed at night we feel the responsibility. It lives with us.’

For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Senior Social Worker - LD & Autism

Essex County Council
£30906 - £42254 per annum
Senior Social Worker / Senior Occupational Therapist/ Senior Practitioner With us, you can achieve more - for yourself as well as those you work to s England, Essex, Harlow
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Social Worker - Assessment and Intervention

Essex County Council
£30906 - £42254 per annum + + Free On-Site Parking & Benefits Package
Social Worker - Assessment and InterventionPermanentFull Time£30,906 to £42,254 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Social Worker - Children with Disabilities

Essex County Council
Social Worker - Children with DisabilitiesPermanent, Full Time£30,906 to £42,254 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Duty Manager (South Woodham Ferrers Leisure Centre)

Chelmsford City Council
Grade 5 - Starting at £22,944 per annum, rising to £25,284
South Woodham Ferrers Leisure Centre is one of Chelmsford City Council's excellent leisure facilities which offers a variety of sporting activities... Chelmsford, Essex
Recuriter: Chelmsford City Council

Assistant Director - Inclusion

Suffolk County Council
£75,745 - £93,245 pa
We are seeking a highly skilled Assistant Director Ipswich, Suffolk
Recuriter: Suffolk County 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