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Research shows the provision of early help services is under ‘serious threat’

The Association of Directors of Children's Services has released its annual Safeguarding Pressures Services research suggesting that services supporting families at an early stage in order to prevent child safeguarding issues are "under serious threat".

Societal factors, resulting in rapidly rising numbers of children at risk of serious harm, are being compounded by funding arrangements and pressure on budgets

The report concludes:

‘Wider societal determinants, such as poverty driven by the cumulative impacts of welfare reform, in secure work, and lack of affordable housing, lead to an increased risk of strained, poor-quality family relationship, which in turn increases the risk of poor quality parenting, parental mental ill-health and emotional distress.

The cumulative impact of these factors affect children’s wellbeing, which in turn affect their outcomes and life chances. If these factors are not addressed, and taking into account the projected continued growth in population, then we can expect the number of children and families who require support to continue to grow, unabated.’

Read the report summary here