Laura Sharman 12 August 2019

More children being cared for in failing council services, says think tank

Nearly 50,000 children are being cared for in areas where council services are failing, a think tank has warned today.

The Social Market Foundation found 65% of all looked-after children in England are in council areas where services has been rated as ‘inadequate’ or ‘requiring improvement.’

The report – the Silent Crisis 2019 – shows that spending time in care can cause children to face educational and economic struggle in later life. For example, 40% of care leavers aged 19-21 are not in education, employment or training, compared to the average rate of 11.1%.

‘These are the children who need the most support and the best care. Yet we are collectively content to give them inadequate support and care. This neglect is nothing less than shameful,’ said Matthew Oakley, SMF senior researcher.

‘We know that looked after children need better. We know that failing to properly support looked after children will help to condemn them to a life of poverty and struggle or even worse. And yet the numbers of such children in failing services is actually rising. That is scandalous.’

The think tank is calling on the Government to establish a charter for looked-after children.

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