Children and Social Work Bill briefing
The Prison Reform Trust has prepared a briefing for the House of Lords second reading of the Children and Social Work Bill, which is taking place on Tuesday 14 June.
The briefing reflects the findings and recommendations of the independent review, In Care, Out of Trouble, which was set up by the Prison Reform Trust to examine the disproportionate representation of looked after children in the youth justice system. The review was chaired by Lord Laming and benefited from consultation with children and young people.
The Prison Reform Trust welcomes many of the provisions of the bill and particularly the provision to enshrine in law the principles of corporate parenting. In line with the findings and recommendations of Lord Laming’s review, we recommend the principles are amended and strengthened to include a duty to protect looked after children from unnecessary criminalisation and prevent offending. We also recommend that the bill is amended to include a duty of cooperation on local authorities and other agencies in respect of corporate parenting, including mental health and health services and commissioning bodies, education services, the police and criminal justice agencies.