No extra money for social services to protect children in prison

Resource allocations to social services departments will not be
reviewed in light of the high court ruling that the Children Act
1989 applies to children in prison, health minister Jacqui Smith
has said, writes Clare Jerrom.

In a written parliamentary question, Smith said that Mr Justice
Munby’s judgement last month was the department of
health’s own view, set out in its statement to the court.

“The department therefore sees no immediate need to revise
existing guidance to councils with social services responsibilities
or to review resource allocations,” she said.

Meanwhile, home office minister Hilary Benn said the home office
would be changing one sentence in the Prison Service’s policy
in relation to juveniles in custody following the high court
ruling, he said.

Considerable investment had been injected across the juvenile
estate, however, these funds must be allocated “according to
specific needs and priorities”.

“The court’s judgement has found that it is for local
authorities to co-operate with the Prison Service in carrying out
their duties, subject to the necessary requirements of
imprisonment,” Benn said.

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