The continuing rise in the number of children being taken into care is a “major issue”, the Chief Executive of Cafcass has declared.
The official ‘Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service’ takes a role in every family court case involving children – both private disputes and public care proceedings. The organisation has seen a surge in demand for both, according to a newly published annual report, but the rise has been particularly steep in relation to care proceedings.
As a result, Chief Executive Anthony Douglas says Cafcass will have to work hard and innovate simply in order to “stand still”. It has begun work with the Ministry of Justice, he reports, to try and address capacity issues.
“Work is under way with the MoJ on our future operating models across private and public law, an important part of which is assessing which measures may help stem demand, while ensuring those in need still receive a service.”
He has also been talking to Family Division President Sir James Munby and other senior judges, as well as to the Legal Aid Agency, about the possibility of new budgetary measures.
Read the report here.