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Neglect the top issues for children taken into care

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: January 13, 2014

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CASES of vulnerable children admitted into care in Derbyshire because of neglect has almost doubled in the last year, new figures show.

A total of 104 children in the county were admitted to care services as of October 2013 because their parents or guardians failed to care for them, according to a report to Derbyshire County Council’s improvement and scrutiny committee.

The figure represents 38.2 per cent of the 272 of youngsters admitted into care last year – up from 55 cases, or 19.9 per cent, in 2012-13 when 278 were admitted to care.

A Derbyshire County Council told the Mail a combination of issues can result in children being taken in by the authorities, but the overall impact results in neglect.

The spokesman said: “We work with children and families across Derbyshire to provide support where it is needed to help prevent youngsters coming into care wherever possible but, sadly, this is sometimes necessary.”

Neglect was by far the most prominent reason why children were taken into care with physical abuse the next biggest cause at 22.2 per cent of cases for 2013.

Substance misuse, including alcohol abuse, was the third most prominent issue with 18.1 per cent - up from 17.6 per cent in 2012-13 - of children taken into care for this reason.

Parents who are unable to look after children, domestic violence, drug abuse and mental health issues can result in a child suffering from neglect and the authorities taking action.

Intensive support to families at risk of neglecting their children is offered in Derbyshire through the county council’s Graded Care Profile, Intensive Family Support Service and the Thriving (Troubled) Families Strategy.

The spokesman added: “Targeted help is given by professionals such as our social workers, family support workers and children’s centre staff, as well as partner organisation staff from health and other agencies, who work alongside us in our multi-agency teams.”

Anyone who is concerned about the welfare of a children can call the county council on 01629 533190.

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