Support the #Respect4SocialWork campaign today and celebrate the social work profession.
Make an Enquiry
Contact Us

Funding for children of alcohol-dependent parents is insufficient

Council leaders have warned that the government funding to help the children of alcoholic parents does not go far enough.

Secretary for Health and Social Care Jeremy Hunt revealed a package of measured designed to help the estimated 200,000 children and young people living with an alcohol-dependent parent, backed with £6m of funding.

However, the Local Government Association and Association of Directors of Children’s Services have warned that while some councils will be able to provide more support for children living in households with an alcohol-dependent parent, the government should provide sufficient funding to enable councils to provide all children with the support they need.

The package of measures includes:

  • fast access to support and mental health services for children and their families where there is a dependent drinker
  • quicker identification of at-risk children, including those undertaking inappropriate care responsibilities
  • the provision of outreach programmes to get more parents successfully through addiction treatment
  • early intervention programmes to reduce the numbers of children needing to go into care

The £6m funding includes a £4.5 million innovation fund for local authorities to develop plans that improve outcomes for children of alcohol-dependent parents and £1 million to fund national capacity building by non-governmental organisations.

Local authorities will be invited to bid for funding by coming up with innovative solutions based on local need, with priority given to areas where more children are affected. Public Health England will be responsible for working with the funded areas to monitor progress.

Launching the proposals, Jeremy Hunt said: “The consequences of alcohol abuse are devastating for those in the grip of an addiction–but for too long, the children of alcoholic parents have been the silent victims. This is not right, nor fair.

“These measures will ensure thousands of children affected by their parent’s alcohol dependency have access to the support they need and deserve.”

He has also appointed Steve Brine MP as the dedicated minister with specific responsibility for children with alcohol-dependent parents who will lead this work in addition to his role as public health minister.

However, Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: “With councils facing a £2 billion funding gap for children’s services by 2020, we urge government to provide sufficient funding to enable councils to provide all children with the support they need, when they need it.

“A joined-up strategy is needed across government for all children and young people, to include all vulnerable groups. This needs to inform the government’s green paper on children’s mental health to deliver the long-term reform needed to ensure the system speeds up the provision of support to children asking for help when they need it.

“We are also calling on the government to reverse reductions to the public health grant to councils, which will help local authorities to do more to tackle drug and alcohol misuse,” she added.

Stuart Gallimore, ADCS President, warned that alongside domestic abuse and mental health problems, parental substance misuse continues to be a growing reason for the involvement of children’s social care in safeguarding children.

“Given the scale of this issue the funding announced today that local authorities are invited to bid for will only help some children in some areas get the help and support that they need. More focus and, crucially, investment is needed to support all children affected by these issues.”

“Children’s services are facing a funding gap of at least £2bn by 2020 in the face of increased demand for our services. This is seriously hampering our ability to improve outcomes for children and their families as local authorities find themselves having to cut back on vital early help and preventative services that we know make a huge difference to children and families’ lives, by supporting them at the earliest opportunity, before they reach crisis point. Without adequate and sustainable funding for children’s services, without prioritising and resourcing preventative services children and families will be much worse off,” he concluded.

Knowledge & Resources

Keep abreast of the latest news in the children's services sector.

New Deprivation of Liberty court launch for children

24/06/2022

A National Deprivation of Liberty Court dealing specifically with applications relating to deprive children of their liberty has been announced by Sir Andrew McFarlane, president of the family division.

The court will deal with applications seeking authorisation to deprive children of their liberty and will be based at the Royal Courts of Justice under the [...]

Read Full Story

Independent review into CSE in Oldham finds child protection procedures were not followed

23/06/2022

Some children have been failed by the agencies that were meant to protect them because child protection procedures had not been properly followed, an independent assurance review into historic child sexual exploitation (CSE) in Oldham has found.

Evidence of poor practice was attributed to a structural flaw the review team found in the multi-agency system [...]

Read Full Story

Sixty Second Interview with Chloe Bach

22/06/2022

Find out more about our Business Administrator Chloe Bach who has been with WillisPalmer since 2009.

Tea or coffee?

Coffee (oat milk latte)

What 3 things would you put in Room 101?

Migraines, slugs and war

What is your favourite place in the world?

Wherever my family is (but I do love New York)

If you were on death row what [...]

Read Full Story
Children First is an online resource for professionals working with children presented by WillisPalmer, providing you with the latest news, features and interviews.
Subscribe Today
WP Quality Assured

A Mackman Group collaboration - market research by Mackman Research | website design by Mackman

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram