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A Care System Built On Recognition – New South Wales Shows Need For Rethink Of The English Care Review

A care system built on Recognition – New South Wales shows need for rethink of the English Care Review

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Agenda for Change: Ensuring a safe and supportive out-of-home care system for children and young people in New South Wales

It is a ‘call for critical actions’. With watchwords of ‘hope, healing and opportunity’ the Agenda for Change being called for is inclusive of all children with all needs, it is truly systemic. The limitations and exclusivity of the English Care Review is revealed in the comparison.

This helpful comparator from NSW makes it clear we need to rethink the content and conclusions of the English Care Review. This is the right time.

Sounds familiar?

The current NSW system has insufficient capacity to meet the quantity and complexity of cases in the out-of-home care system. Research and commission papers have documented the impact of placement breakdown, the impact on carers who leave due to a lack of support, and the failure to provide adequate support to those who remain…

This starting point is not where the English Care Review started.

Sounds unfamiliar?

The new government needs to invest in significant reform that is beyond the political cycle to make sure that the experience of being in out-of-home care is no longer a risk factor for further danger and traumatisation.

This starting point is not where the English Care Review started.

The New South Wales Agenda for Change is based on recognition of the needs that are to be met.

Recognition – it will take a generation is serious and practical – not the 5 years of the Care Review.

Recognition – its first statement is that specialist services need to be accessible – high level needs are not addressed at all in the Care Review. The recent Nuffield Family Justice Observatory DOLS report provides the evidence that should change perspectives regarding high level needs.

Recognition of the need for an evidenced model of care that can encompass all children and all needs ensures everyone is talking the same language and walking the same walk – this appreciation of professional foundation and culture was unaddressed by the Care Review.

Recognition that consistency and continuity of care comes through a thorough training and consultancy again accessible for all provides the secure emotional base that is a prerequisite for growth and development.

Recognition that an independent assessment of care standards is necessary – the recent contortions regarding Ofsted and the invidious position it has been placed in regarding Supported Accommodation make the case for independence from Government.

Recognition of the scope of the scope of the problem, ages, needs, able to understand how trauma, poverty and deprivation bring profound effects to a child and family, even with early intervention unless we take into account these 3 aspects and their often sudden emergence in the lives of a child and family we cannot respond appropriately, it is why we no longer can rely on sufficiency as a concept(based on numbers)  and must move to the new concept and expectation of specificity ( based on needs)

Recognition of the urgency of a coordinated and sustained program to reduce and eliminate the need for children and young people to be placed in motels and other alternative care arrangements. Coordinated and sustained provide the challenge to the uncoordinated and under-resourced Supported Accommodation emerging sector. The government response of £200m for partial and piecemeal experiments is woefully away from the budget asked for by the Care Review, itself an inadequate funding. The amount of funding response has to be a recognition of that required to be equal to the task of restoring a child’s life through reparative care from the current societal ravages. The Care Review started from the point of savings in the present, rather than investment for the future.

Recognition of complexity and risk.

Recognition requires a rethink.

 

NCERCC