NCH: Gaps between services hamper family support

Campaigners told MPs yesterday that gaps between adults’ and children’s services were hampering efforts to support families where children are at risk of entering the care system.

Both Family and Parenting Institute chief executive Mary MacLeod and NCH deputy chief executive Margaret Dillon made this point, in the second evidence session of the children, schools and families select committee’s inquiry on children on the edge of care.

Dillon said in some cases adult services did not understand their clients’ parenting responsibilities. She said that although there wasn’t a “magic bullet”, there were some relatively straightforward answers to the problem. “It could be a question of simply asking ‘are you a father or mother?’. It’s not automatically asked,” she continued.

Dillon also highlighted the importance of linking with housing services. She said: “It can give an indication of who’s at risk of losing their tenancy, and can therefore prevent an escalation. We’ve got to look at prevention projects around housing.”

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