Conservative councillors concerned about funding for children's services

By agency reporter
October 26, 2017

An Action for Children survey of 500 Conservative councillors reveals over a third (38 per cent) agree there is a "lack of clear direction and funding" from central government for children’s centres, family hubs and family support.

More than half (53 per cent) believe that central government funding cuts have made it harder for their council to deliver legally required responsibilities for children and young people.

Nearly three-quarters (72 per cent) agree that long-term funding for children’s services is a major concern for their council.

Chief executive of Action for Children, Sir Tony Hawkhead, said, “Our findings show the growing fear that the Government is failing in its pledge to give all children the best start in life.

 “Around a third of children in England – nearly 200,000 – fell behind by age five last year and with one children’s centre closing every week, we’re deeply concerned struggling families are being abandoned.

“Early years services are one of the key lifelines for families living in poor housing, in financial trouble, with mental health issues and those whose own childhood experiences affect their parenting. These lifeline services are being hollowed out, fragmented and cut, and children are bearing the brunt.

“The Government needs a bold vision that will give direction and provide local authorities with adequate funding to make sure all our children get the best start in life.”

One Conservative lead member who took part in the survey said the impact of further cuts would be “significant” and that “we have already scrapped some family support services in our local authority 

– this is the result of funding being reduced. Currently those that are the most vulnerable are a high priority. It’s important that we do more earlier on. Early intervention is key.”

* Action for Children https://www.actionforchildren.org.uk/

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