Category: Children’s Services


From Nursery World. 15th September 2010

Early intervention services in the NHS that promote infant mental health and attachment are being targeted for cuts in some areas, a leading child psychiatrist has warned.

Dr Shirley Gracias, a consultant in infant, child and adolescent psychiatry, and ex-chair of the Association for Infant Mental Health UK (AIMH UK), commented following the International Association for the Study of Attachment, which took place at the end of August.

She said, ‘I am alarmed by the approach being taken by some in the NHS towards the mental health of infants. Helping parents to form attachments with their babies is being seen as a dispensable luxury, with funding being withdrawn……

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From Children and Young People Now. 16th September 2010

Sheffield City Council’s package of £2m of cuts will hit the most vulnerable young people, according to Unite’s Community and Youth Workers’ members.

The union is currently consulting with management to reduce compulsory redundancies at Sheffield Futures, which provides the youth service and Connexions service for Sheffield City Council. Ninety-five out of 360 jobs are at risk.

Unite official Harriet Eisner said: “These cuts are going to hit highly skilled youth workers and Connexions workers in Sheffield. They are also going to do untold damage to Sheffield’s communities in the future by cutting a vital frontline service to the youth of today.

“The real price will be paid by those young people we could be helping for generations to come. Sheffield families and communities who value the work are already coming to us expressing their fears for the future.”

Sheffield Futures helps young people into training and into work. They also work closely with vulnerable young people, providing support to them with health, developmental and social problems…..

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From the Westmoreland Gazette. 16th September 2010

COUNCILLORS have agreed to drastic spending cuts in order to cope with a £7.93 million reduction in their budget.

As part of the Government’s £6.2 billion cut in public spending, every council in the UK is being forced to cut back.

Cumbria County Council this morning agreed to the cuts at a cabinet meeting.

Children’s services will be hit hardest, with a £3.1 million reduction in the area-based grant.

This means that there will have to be funding reductions in the way the council supports schools in areas such as under attainment, attendance, healthy eating, extended services and travelling to school initiatives.

The funding reductions in children’s services will also impact on other organisations.

The council’s contribution to the Connexions service, which helps 13-19 year olds progress into adult life through support and development, is being reduced by £415,000…..

………….We are particularly concerned that we are still awaiting decisions from the Government on a further £1.75m in grants for play areas, respite care facilities for disabled children and Children’s Centres.”

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From Children and Young People Now. 14th September 2010

Local authorities are cutting budgets for disabled children pre-emptively in the belief that funding will not be available for services from April, according to a report.

The study by Every Disabled Child Matters, based on the responses of 41 families and professionals, highlights concerns that despite substantial investment through the Aiming High for Disabled Children programme over the past year, some areas have slashed services for disabled children in an attempt to reduce budgets.

The report, Close to Crisis: Frontline Service Cuts for Disabled Children, raises concerns that swingeing cuts to local services will result in a long-term increase in government spending because families will fall back on expensive crisis support….

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Cuts Watch #244: Services for Disabled Children

Posted at 8:22 am on 15 Sep 10 by Richard Exell

A survey by Every Disabled Child Matters reveals that local authorities are already cutting services for disabled children and their parents including short breaks, play and leisure, education, transport, health, training and equipment. Close to Crisis: Frontline service cuts for disabled children is based on a survey of EDCM’s members over the summer, and it found that voluntary groups working with disabled children and their families are afraid that cuts next year will damage the services they rely on and some local authorities are already making cuts assuming that central government funding will no longer be available from next April….

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From The York Press. 6th September 2010.

ORGANISATIONS which help children and young people in York are facing grant cuts of up to 50 per cent as the Government’s spending cuts begin to bite.

“A City of York Council report has revealed that the city is losing about £250,000 through the curtailing of the Early Intervention Fund (EIF), which helps vulnerable children aged five to 13, and the axing of York Youth Community Action Programme (YYCAP), which encourages volunteering among teenagers aged between 14 to 16.

As a result, officers are proposing to cut all grants given under the EIF scheme for this year by 25 per cent. They warn that payments due after August 26 under the YYCAP programme will not be arriving from central government, leaving some organisations in the programme, such as the Prince’s Trust, facing a shortfall of nearly 50 per cent. Others face lower shortfalls. Three organisations – York Boxing Club, the Running Wild nature scheme and York Council for Voluntary Service – will lose grants from both funds.

Coun Carol Runciman, the city council’s executive member for children and young people, will decide on September 14 whether to approve the officers’ actions. Labour group leader Coun James Alexander said the cuts would have a “huge impact”.

He said: “These groups include those supporting refugees and parents of children with disabilities. This is the real impact on the coalition’s cuts being felt here and now in York.”

YYCAP was one of five one-year pilot schemes running nationally.

Paul Murphy, assistant director of adults, children and education, said the projects involved had been working closely with the council to try to minimise the impact, which included possible job losses in the voluntary sector, and were hoping to find other funding to keep schemes going.

The organisations and schemes facing a 25 per cent cut in their EIF grants are: CANDI, which works with disabled children’s families; the Ethnic Minority Service; the Young Travellers’ Learning Project; nurture groups; parenting support in the voluntary sector; voluntary sector capacity building; Running Wild; Youth Inclusion Support Panel; York Council for Voluntary Services; the education project The Island; York Boxing Club; Young Carers; Independent Domestic Abuse Services and Refugee Action.”

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From Children and Young People Now. 7th September 2010.

Bolton Council has launched a consultation over plans to slash £150,000 from its services for children with disabilities budget.

“The cuts involve a reduction in overtime, training and equipment budgets as well as recruitment and buying in additional specialist support.The move is part of council-wide cuts, with councillors looking to slash its total budget by 40 per cent over the next four years.

Councillor Ebrahim Adia, Bolton’s executive member for children’s services, said: “Due to the global recession and the government’s plans to reduce the budget deficit outlined in the emergency budget, we anticipate that the grants we receive from the government will significantly reduce.

“We are determined to continue to provide a good service for the borough’s children with disabilities, and to make sure that our carers are supported in their roles.”

Among those to be consulted will be children with disabilities and their families, staff and unions.

Every Disabled Child Matters is due to launch a report next week on the effect of government cuts on children’s disabilities services.

Laura Courtney, campaign manager at Every Disabled Child Matters, says that cuts to disability services for children are happening across the UK.

She added: “What we are finding is that too often these cuts are being made without consultation and in anticipation of government cuts that have not yet happened and may not happen.””

Vulnerable young people and low income families suffer as grants are axed

From the Runcorn and Widnes World. 7th September 2010.

“SEVERE cuts in Government grants of £6.8 million from this year’s spending have forced Halton Council to axe 41 jobs and slash services.

Councillors unanimously approved an amended budget at an extra-ordinary meeting in Runcorn Town Hall last week.

Vulnerable teenagers, low income families, children in care, mentally ill youngsters, victims of crime and domestic violence and young people suffering drug and alcohol misuse will be hit by the loss of funding.

Council leader, Clr Rob Polhill, now fears further coalition cuts of up to £15 million a year for the next three years could have a more devastating impact on the local community.

He said: “This is absolutely unprecedented.

“Halton, which is a deprived community is bearing the brunt of these cuts.

“We have taken a bigger hit than many other areas. It is totally unfair and a worry for us.

“We are under no illusion, services will suffer.”

Halton has lost £17.09 per head, more than double the national average of £8.75.

The loss of £601,379, allocated to Halton as one of the most deprived areas, means schemes to tackle teenage pregancies, domestic violence and anti-social behaviour will be cut.

Counselling and care for children and young people with mental health lost £50,000….”

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Related articles.

Jobs and services on the line as borough faces up to Government cuts

From the Children and Young People Bulletin. 7th September 2010.

“Bolton Council has launched a consultation over plans to slash £150,000 from its services for children with disabilities budget.

The cuts involve a reduction in overtime, training and equipment budgets as well as recruitment and buying in additional specialist support.

The move is part of council-wide cuts, with councillors looking to slash its total budget by 40 per cent over the next four years.

Councillor Ebrahim Adia, Bolton’s executive member for children’s services, said: “Due to the global recession and the government’s plans to reduce the budget deficit outlined in the emergency budget, we anticipate that the grants we receive from the government will significantly reduce.

“We are determined to continue to provide a good service for the borough’s children with disabilities, and to make sure that our carers are supported in their roles.”

Among those to be consulted will be children with disabilities and their families, staff and unions……”

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