The Care Inquiry addresses parliamentarians

The focus should be on finding security and stability for children who can’t live with their birth parents (temporarily or permanently), rather than on legal status, a group of MPs and peers will be told today (Wednesday 12 December).

The MPs and peers will be attending a briefing of the Care Inquiry, set up by eight charities to make recommendations to government about how the care system can best meet the needs of children and young people in England.

At the briefing, which will be introduced by Baroness Hilary Armstrong, they will hear from the chair of the Inquiry, Robert Tapsfield, Professor Ian Sinclair from the University of York who will be discussing stability and permanence, as well as foster carer Jim Bond and two young people, Kevani Kanda and Amy O’Donohue, who have experience of care.

Through formal sessions and online submissions, the Care Inquiry has so far heard evidence from those who live and work within and around the care system. This has included looked-after children, care leavers, adoptees, adopters, kinship carers, residential care workers and birth families who have talked about what works and what needs to change within the care system. Trends in the care system over the past thirty years have also been studied.

The final session in January will be covering key themes identified in sessions one and two and will also consider proposals on what can be changed within the care system, with a report and recommendations to follow.

Robert Tapsfield, chair of the Inquiry, said: “This is a vital opportunity to talk to MPs and peers about children who can’t live with their birth parents, and how the state can ensure these children are found safe, stable and secure homes for as long as they need them.”

Kevin Williams, chief executive of TACT, said: “What is most important is the continuity and quality of relationships that children have with their carers and those who are closest to them.

“For this to happen we need to be really clear within the sector about what does in fact work, and that’s what the Care Inquiry has set out to do.”

You can find out more about the Care Inquiry by visiting http://www.pinterest.com/thecareinquiry

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