Young people leaving care place in ‘unsuitable’ accommodation
- 11 Jun
It has been revealed that councils in England are placing vulnerable young people in bed and breakfasts despite rules that restrict the practise.
Through the BBC Radio 4’s File on 4 programme it has been found that thousands of young people leaving care are placed in inappropriate housing, reports the BBC.
Official data for 2013-14 shows that 78% of care leavers across England are said to be living in places which are safe and meet their needs.
Jenny Clifton, Principal Policy Adviser for Safeguarding at the Office of the Children's Commissioner said: "We do know that some of them are in bed and breakfast although there is guidance, which makes it quite clear that should only be in an emergency. There are very vulnerable people being placed in highly unsuitable environments and inadequately inspected environments as well."
Councils are required to have processes in place to ensure 16- and 17-year-olds cannot slip through the net and are immediately put in touch with social workers if they present themselves at housing departments as homeless
Alison O'Sullivan, president of the Association of Directors of Children's services has said that young people should never be placed in bed and breakfast accommodation. "There are occasions in a crisis where for very short periods of time that can be the only option but it is not desirable and should only really be used in extreme circumstances. Where very young people are placed in bed and breakfast in emergencies it's important the local authorities do visit that accommodation and check for themselves that it is suitable for use in a crisis."
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