Children in need Hodge omission met with surprise

Children’s minister Margaret Hodge has come under fire for failing
to mention a new system which provides information on children in
need during the committee stage of the Children Bill.

Conservative shadow minister for children Tim Loughton, described
Hodge’s failure – when proposals for databases on all children were
being discussed – as “unbelievable”.

Action on Rights for Children also expressed surprise. Terri Dowty,
policy director at the charity, said she wanted to see “details of
the full range of government information-sharing plans for children
made public.”

A Department for Education and Skills spokesperson said that ICS
was a “conceptual framework for working with children in need”.

In its response to the Victoria Climbi’ report, Keeping Children
Safe, the government states that the child protection register will
be phased out as ICS is introduced

“This way of working is simply a continuation of the work that is
already well established in children’s social services and does not
require any legislation to take forward – hence not coming up as an
issue with the bill. This is a wholly different area from the
information-sharing database,” said the spokesperson.

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