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This conference was an opportunity to discuss priorities for the children’s care system in England.
It took place following the publication of the final findings of the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care and was a timely opportunity to assess lessons taken from the review, as well as its recommendations which include:
- a ‘radical reset’ to improve the lives of children in care
- that children growing up in care should be a protected characteristic in law, with the aim of reducing stigma and discrimination
- the introduction of a windfall tax on profits made by large care providers
There was further discussion on issues faced by children and families throughout their time in the care system and their relationships with social workers, as well as on future provision for care leavers.
Delegates also considered the future of the social care market following the CMA’s market study, which outlined recommendations for the sector.
Further areas for discussion included:
- children’s care system - capacity - maintaining standards at both national and regional levels - funding into the future
- children and families - needs, support and outcomes - early intervention - keeping families together - mental health - educational attainment - pathways into further study and employment
- workforce - recruitment and retention - training and CPD - support and pay - caseload burden - parity of esteem - developing the profession
- best practice - implementation - lessons from other jurisdictions
We are pleased to have been able to include keynote sessions with Josh MacAlister, Chair, Independent Review of Children’s Social Care (pre-recorded presentation); Mark Riddell, National Implementation Adviser for Care Leavers; and Dan Turnbull, Director, Markets, CMA.
The conference was an opportunity for stakeholders to consider the issues alongside key policy officials who attended from the Cabinet Office; DHSC; DWP; HM Treasury; MoJ; Ofsted; and The Scottish Government - as well as parliamentary pass-holders from the House of Commons.