Today, the 14th of June, 2016, the House of Lords will start to officially scrutinise government’s plans to radically alter children’s social care
“Under “Power to test different ways of working”, Clauses 15 to 19 of the children and social work bill introduce a fast-track process for the removal of any hundreds of local authority duties to children, young people and families.
“After a request from a local authority or a specified person sent by ministers into a local area to oversee the improvement of children’s services, regulations can be drafted to remove any children’s social care requirement in virtually all of the Children’s Act, 1989, the entirety of Children’s Act, 2004 and several other acts of parliament.
“The Secretary of State will be similarly empowered to initiate this process. Children’s social care requirements can be removed for up to six years. This cap could be replaced at a future date, which is what happened with education law. There is no duty to consult local children, young people and families.”, reports the Guardian .
What would happen during scrutiny
Parliamentarians will be asked to agree with or disapprove the regulations, with no opportunity for amendments
Once regulations have passed, those reliant on children’s social care will have lost whatever entitlements have been exempted
Potential Results of Scrutiny
This may be the start of social care rights by geography
Innovation is important and encouraged but the scale of the legal requirements threatened by this bill is enormous, encompassing social care duties in respect of child protection, children in need, children in care, care leavers and disabled children
The prohibition of profit-making companies taking on child protection services could also be lifted
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