Children’s service experts have warned that spending cuts for police, social workers and health professionals could lead to a “perfect storm” with high demand and low resources.
The Association of Directors of Children’s Services (ADCS) revealed there has been an increase in children who need support from local authorities.
Figures show that since 2007/08 there has been higher demand for “front door” child protection services, including children from all age groups and in the most serious need categories.
ADCS research also revealed there has been 52.3% rise in the number of referrals as a result of suspected abuse of neglect. The organisation also noted there had been a 63.3% hike in children younger than one needing a child protection plan.
Marion Davis, president of ADCS, said: “This research shows that there is trouble brewing in child protection teams up and down the country with rising demand and the threat of reductions in preventative services.
“Without investment in early intervention, we risk creating a perfect storm – as demand rises and resources reduce, the current early intervention schemes will come under increased pressure as resources are siphoned off to cope with demands on statutory services.”
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