Make an Enquiry
Contact Us

Minimum allowance for Staying Put policy is urged

A national minimum allowance for the Staying Put policy should be introduced, the National Association of Fostering Providers has warned.

Under the Staying Put policy, which was made law through the Children and Families Act 2014, councils have a duty to support looked-after children who want to remain with their foster carer until they are 21-years-old.

However, under-funding the policy means that many carers are unable to pay their bills and support young people in their care.

“Enabling young people to continue to live with their foster carers after 18 is a wonderful policy and something many carers have done informally for many years,” said Harvey Gallagher, chief executive of NAFP.

“But government have under-funded the Staying Put policy and, as a result, too many carers are unable to afford to pay basic bills and continue to care for young people,” he added.

NAFP is calling on the next government to review the impact of Staying Put to consider the true cost, lost costs, capacity costs and timelines to ensure a better approach could be taken.

“Akin to the national minimum fostering allowance, an allowance for Staying Put would bring up the lowest levels of support to something more manageable,” added Gallagher.

Ahead of the general election, the Association also urges that every child in care goes to the most appropriate placement for them as an individual.

“We would like to see a strengthening of legal guidance that means the most appropriate placement, as defined in the Children Act 1989, is not just a category of care, but the placement that most meets the needs of every individual child,” said Gallagher.

The NAFP also urges an end to “overblown and inefficient commissioning of children's services,” saying that commissioning of foster care is hugely inefficient and ineffective and re-instating the commissioning support programme would go some way to repairing this.

The Association concludes that new ways of managing a mixed economy of fostering services are needed as the impact of budget constraints on local authorities has had consequential impact beyond the front line delivery of services over the last five years.

“New delivery models should be encouraged in ways that have yet to occur, such as local authorities primarily offering only emergency placements and utilising IFP carers for planned placements. Better local (as opposed to national) coordination of existing foster care placements in needed to ensure better use of vacancies, the most appropriative placement and an end to local authorities competing with each other for IFP placements,” the Association concludes.



Knowledge & Resources

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

A look back at 2022 with WillisPalmer's Head of Practice, Lucy Hopkins…


2022 saw people trying to get back to some degree of normality following the Covid-19 lockdowns, restrictions and school closures that we had faced for the previous two years. However, the impact of Covid-19 continued and many services experienced, and continue to experience, backlogs and difficulties, including those services relating to children and families.

Social worker [...]
Read Full Story

John Lewis Christmas advert highlights important messages regarding foster care and looked after children


Every year people are excited to see what the theme of the John Lewis & Partners Christmas advert will be. This year's advert reminded our Head of Practice, Lucy Hopkins, of all the times she arrived at the homes of foster carers with children or young people who were anxious, scared, worried and hungry, having just [...]

Read Full Story

The WillisPalmer Christmas Tree Decorating Competition 2022

Who Wins..? You Decide!

We have two Christmas trees at the WillisPalmer office and this year the staff upstairs are going to compete with the staff downstairs to see who has the best decorated tree... and we want YOU to decide on the winner!

Tree 1 - Downstairs 

Tree [...]

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

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