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Council Services to Merge to Improve Adoption Rates In England

Councils in England are to merge services to improve adoption rates according to plans to be announced in the Queen’s speech. The move comes following as adoption is “happening at too small and localised a scale” according to the Department for Education.

The new bill will force authorities to merge local adoption services if they fail to do so themselves within two years.

Mixed Reception For Proposed Changes

The news has been greeted by some as a step in the right direction with others warning that there is still a lot of work to be done in order to improve the situation of adoption across the UK. According to official statistics over 3,000 children, are waiting to be matched with new parents, with more than 50% of those having spent 18 months in care. Some have argued that the new rules put too much emphasis on adoption rather than other types of family arrangements.

The families minister, Edward Timpson, said: “Every single day a child spends waiting in care for their new family is a further delay to a life full of love and stability. This just isn’t good enough. By coming together and joining forces, councils can make sure more children are matched with families far quicker – regardless of where they live.”

Hugh Thornbery, CEO of Adoption UK, said he was pleased with the new plans. He said: “I have long held the view that 180 agencies in England does not make sense when only 5,000 children a year are being placed.

“The encouragement to local authorities and voluntary adoption agencies to work more closely together under regional arrangements makes sense as long as we see continuous improvements in matching children and supporting families when they need it.

“Adoption UK will be looking to see much stronger links between the recruitment of adopters, matching with children and the provision of support. I want to see initiatives that bring a holistic approach to that support, as so many children adopted from care have multiple and complex needs.”

Contact Our Adoption Lawyers Edinburgh

We understand that adoption and child services can be a very sensitive matter for you and your family. With such a complex process, it is best to turn to legal experts. We provide advice and legal representation on all family matters. If you wish to adopt a child or are in the middle of a custody battle our team of specialist family lawyers can help. Contact us today using our online contact form.

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