Children and Families Minister Will Quince addresses Parliament in response to the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care.
With permission, Mr Speaker, I will now make a statement on how the Government is responding to the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care and the Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) Children’s Social Care report.
This Government believes in a country where all children are given an equal chance to fulfil their potential, but sadly we are not there yet. It is for this reason that we made our manifesto commitment to launch the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care in March 2021, which was published today.
This was commissioned to take a fundamental look at the children’s social care system, and to understand how we must transform it to better support the most vulnerable children and families.
I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to Josh MacAlister and his team for this comprehensive review, as well as the children, the Experts by Experience Board and the care leavers, families and carers who shared their experiences of the current system and aspirations for a future one.
The Review is bold and broad, calling for a reset of the system so that it acts decisively in response to abuse; provides more help to families in crisis; and ensures those in care have lifelong loving relationships and homes.
I look forward to working with the sector, those with first-hand experience and with colleagues on all sides of the House, to inform an ambitious and detailed Government response and implementation strategy, to be published before the end of 2022.
To get us there, I have three main priorities:
- The first is to improve the child protection system so that it keeps children safe from harm as effectively as possible.
- The second is to support families to care for their children, so that they can have safe, loving and happy childhoods which set them up for fulfilling lives.
- And the third is to ensure that there are the right placements for children in the right places, so that those who cannot stay with their parents grow up in a safe, stable and loving home.