Fostering pay research under fire

The use of research underpinning the government’s proposals for a national fostering allowance is set to be heavily criticised in submissions to a national consultation.

Respondents to the consultation on the proposed allowance, which closes next week, argue that the research is 10 years out of date and omits some relevant costs.

Fostering Network policy and campaigns manager Vicki Swain said the government should commission new research before setting allowance levels. Swain, Vicki HP

She said the Small Fortunes research used did not take into account the extra capital costs involved in fostering a child, as people often had to move into bigger homes or buy a bigger car.

Kevin Williams, chief executive of the Adolescent and Children’s Trust, said its response would point out that the research had included families in poverty and therefore should not be used to determine a decent level of allowance. He added that its age meant it took no account of current leisure activities or consumer goods, such as computer games.

Baaf Adoption and Fostering will say that the amount proposed by the government, which starts at 99.56 a week for babies, is below what most councils already pay.

It will argue that fees for foster carers must be addressed alongside allowances if the national recruitment crisis is to be tackled.


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