Practitioners’ Messages

Although young people should not have caring responsibilities that are inappropriate to their age, some do and will still need support.

Ensure that the multi-agency strategy addresses the needs of young carers and, where possible, is linked to the Children and Young People’s Plan for your area.

Have in place a protocol, shared between adults and children’s services, for identifying and assessing young carers.

Consider whether the young carer is a “child in need” under the Children Act 1989.

Ensure that all staff are aware of procedures for reporting child protection concerns.

Adopt a whole-family perspective, working jointly with statutory services for children and adults, voluntary services, education and (for children of 13 years and older) Connexions.

Ensure that all assessments of adults include a check to find out if there are children in the family who either take on, or are at risk of taking on, a caring role.

In line with fair access to care services (FACS) guidance, ensure that adult services support disabled people in their parenting role.

Ensure that the authority has a senior lead on young carers to resolve promptly disputes between adults’ and children’s services.

Offer welfare rights assessments to 16- and 17-year-old carers.

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