Executive Director for Children Families and Education introduced
the item and outlined details in a
Following the presentation, Members had the opportunity to ask
Chair summarised that:
It was clear that Croydon wanted to take care of all
children in need despite the current climate
Some progress had been made in trying to get other
Local Authorities to share responsibility for UASC through the Pan
Members were unanimous in their belief that funding
from central government was not adequate, in particular for the
18-25 year old group.
The paper was referred to Scrutiny by Cabinet but it
was unclear what was being asked of the sub-committee.
was commented that there was uncertainty as to whether this meeting
was a pre decision Scrutiny exercise or just an information giving
exercise. Officers said that there were two issues for
consideration, the need to reduce the number of UASC children in
Croydon and also the funding gap. Solutions were being sought for
both issues and a decision would have to be taken to reduce the
pressure on Croydon. The Cabinet Member for Children Families and
Education added that the issues presented a number of complexities,
the details of which were being presented for noting by Scrutiny at
this stage to bring awareness that decisions on safeguarding and
risk may have to be taken where relevant with little notice. There
would be an opportunity for further discussions but it was vital
that Scrutiny had early oversight of the situation.
In response to a question on what
measure were in place to maintain the budget , officers said that they were working towards
ensuring that they could get the best value for placements but more
needed to be done in this area.
It was clear that a meeting
would need to take place to discuss the matter in detail and it was
agreed for an informal meeting to take place in the coming weeks to
discuss the options in greater depth.
reaching its recommendation the Sub-Committee came to the following
It was encouraging that the need to take care of all
children despite the current climate was behind all decision
There had been some progress made through the Pan
The additional funding from government was welcome.
The revisions to the National Transfer Scheme will need to be
judged on whether it is effective in addressing the issues facing
There were still serious concerns regarding the
level of funding received from government which was not enough to
support and provide services for UASC and, mainly, the resulting
disproportionate number of Looked After Children in Croydon due to
the large number of former UASC
It was unclear what was being asked of the Children
and Young People sub-committee by Cabinet who recommended that this
report be presented to the sub-committee. The Cabinet Member
clarified that the significant costs were not sustainable,
especially given the Council’s serious financial position.
Consequently decisions will need to be made soon on what action to
take. The Cabinet requests that the assumptions in the report are
challenged at Scrutiny so that any decision is based on a robust
and well-founded information.
Sub-Committee recommended that:
The Chair engage in further discussion with officers
to obtain reassurance on the robustness of the case which will be
the foundation of a future Cabinet decision.
Action/Request for info
Data on UASC in employment or further