Government responds to childcare exemption concerns

Children|October 17th 2016

The government has announced plans to establish an expert panel to oversee the exemption of local authorities from child protection responsibilities.

Under controversial provisions in the Children and Social Work Bill, councils could be freed from “requirements imposed by children’s social care legislation” for periods of three years or more.

Campaign groups have already described the idea as “dangerous” and liable to encourage the privatisation of child protection services. The review panel will attempt to address such concerns. Established via an amendment to the bill before its upcoming passage through the House of Lords, the panel will oversee and approve applications for exemptions, Children & Young People Now reports.

Richard Watts of the Local Government Association told the site:

“The safeguards we want to see are not just parliamentary process but giving local government a say in whether freedoms should be offered to individual councils.”

Photo of the Houses of Parliament by Nastja via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence

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