Children's social care 'crumbling' and 'not fit for purpose' warns foster carer

23 May 2022, 16:53

By James Bickerton

Children's social care in England is "crumbling away" and "not fit for purpose" according to an incendiary warning from Martin Barrow, a journalist and foster carer.

He was reacting to the publication of a damning report into children's care from Josh MacAlister, chair of the Independent Review of Children's Care in England.

The report was starkly critical of the current "faltering" system, arguing change is "now both morally urgent and financially unavoidable".

Mr Barrow, who covers the care sector extensively in his work, backed its findings on LBC.

Speaking to presenter Shelagh Fogarty he said: "The report articulates what most people already realise about the care system; that it's crumbling away, it's not fit for purpose.

"There are lots of big problems with the care system and I think it's good it's all been brought together in one document."

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Asked specifically what needs to change he added: "We need more support.

"We could do with greater stability in the workforce of social workers - personnel changes constantly and you're therefore having to pretty much start again.

"Things take a very long time. I can understand why this is so, but of course when you're a 13-year-old trying to put your life back together with the help of a foster carer these decisions seen to take forever and it is simply not fair.

"The court process is very delayed. It takes a long time for decisions to go to court, and for the decisions that are taken to be implemented and all these things take a very long time."

Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi said the MacAlister report is "the start of a journey".

He added: "We are ready to meet the challenge set by this review and I will set out my plans for bold and ambitious change in the coming months."

READ MORE: Nurse, 27, arrested over 'fatal poisoning of child' in Birmingham Children's Hospital

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