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Legal threat forces DfE to withdraw its ‘mythbuster’ document

The Department for Education has decided to withdraw its Children’s Social Care Statutory Guidance Myth Busting guidance in the face of legal action from a number of charities.

 Article 39 was among 50 charities who challenged the decision to publish the document which it suggested ‘removed important statutory safeguards’ for children. The charity also claimed that the document contained ‘numerous inaccuracies’ leading to increased risk to vulnerable children and care leavers.

Whilst the Children’s Minister, Nadhim Zahawi initially defended the document as being a simple clarification of misunderstood statutory guidance,  the Department subsequently backed down claiming it was not in anyone’s interest to ‘divert time and public money to litigation’.

The charity's director, Carolyne Willow, said: "It's deeply disappointing that the children's minister didn't respond to our serious concerns months ago but what matters is that the document has now been withdrawn and the risks to children and young people minimised’.