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Welfare Reform on the Web (October 2000): Child Welfare - UK

ADOPTION: PRIME MINISTER'S REVIEW: ISSUED FOR CONSULTATION

Performance and Innovation Unit

London: 2000

Recommendations for the reform of the adoption process include:

  • new national standards for adoption recruitment and assessment, and a new appeals procedure for local authorities;
  • a national adoption register to match approved parents with children awaiting adoption;
  • some adoption function to be contracted out to private companies;
  • more single people to be encouraged to adopt.
The report confirms that adoption should remain part of the local authority remit. Social workers should be trained in adoption, performance indicators should be introduced and local authorities should provide comprehensive information on children in their care.

ADOPTION IS NO PANACEA

B. Holman

Community Care, no. 1334, 2000, p. 12

Argues that government, in spite of its eagerness to promote adoption, should ensure that no parents lose their children because of the effects of poverty or the absence of supportive services.

ALL RIGHTS NOW

P. White

Young People Now, issue 137, 2000, p. 10-11

Explains how the creation of a Children's Commissioner could empower young people and give them the voice they are often denied.

CHILD CARER JOB LEAFLET IS 'INVITATION TO PAEDOPHILES'

R. Smithers

Guardian, Aug. 3rd 2000, p. 11

The Professional Association of Nursery Nurses has warned that a government recruitment drive to attract 83, 000 childcare workers by 2002 could prove a magnet for paedophiles.

CHILDREN GET THEIR OWN UNIT TO FIGHT POVERTY

A. Frean

Times, Aug. 2nd 2000, p. 10

A new Children's Unit backed by a cross-departmental cabinet committee is to be created to promote policies for preventing under-achievement and poverty among children.

CHILDREN MUST COME FIRST IN ADOPTION

R. Winchester

Community Care, no. 1334, 2000, p. 8-9

A survey of field social workers has shown that: 99% think that the child's welfare should be paramount in any new legislation; 91% think that the views of the child should have a significant influence on adoption proceedings; 89% think that co-habiting couples, including those of the same sex, should be allowed to adopt; 51% think that birth parents' consent should not be required before their child can be adopted; and 73% think that local authorities should continue to be responsible for adoption.

FITTING IT TOGETHER

E. Levin, P. Kearney and G. Rosen

Community Care, no. 1333 2000, p. 24-25

Children whose parents misuse alcohol or drugs, or have mental health problems cannot be properly served without better inter-agency collaboration.

HOME SWEET HOME

Y. Sun monu

Foster Care, no. 102, 2000, p. 17

Article explores the resurgent role of residential homes in the provision of modern children's services.

LEARNING THE LESSONS: GOVERNMENT'S RESPONSE TO LOST IN CARE .

Department of Health

London: TSO, 2000 (Cm 4776)

Summarises government initiatives to safeguard children in local authority care and responds in detail to the 72 recommendations of the Waterhouse report.

MAKING CHILDCARE SUSTAINABLE IN DISADVANTAGED URBAN AND RURAL AREAS

Daycare Trust

London: 2000 (Securing the future; 4)

Paper shows that new and existing childcare services are struggling to survive, especially in disadvantaged urban and rural areas. There is evidence that funding streams are not delivering an even spread of services where they are most needed in spite of many sources of funds. As many as 45 distinct streams of money can be used for childcare. However these sources are so complex and diverse that key players are often unaware of all potential sources or unable to make the most of them.

MORE THAN A MEMORY

R. Tapsfield and L. Jordan

Community Care, no. 1334, 2000, p. 20-21

Argues that new legislation is required that redefines adoption to ensure that links and connections between adopted children and their birth families are respected and maintained as far as possible.

NO CHAMPION FOR ENGLISH CHILDREN

R. Martell

Community Care, no. 1329, 2000, p. 10-11

Government has resisted calls to create a Children's Commissioner for England in the wake of the Waterhouse report on abuse in children's homes in North Wales.

A PROPOSAL FOR A COMMISSION FOR CHILDREN IN SCOTLAND

K. Potter

Edinburgh: Scottish Alliance for Children's Rights, 2000

Sets out a model for a Commissioner for Children suited to the political, social and cultural circumstances of Scotland. The model is based on a coherent set of principles and outlines the powers, duties and functions needed to ensure the effective monitoring promotion and protection of the right's of children and young people in Scotland.

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