HC Deb 13 February 1976 vol 905 c427W
Mrs. Wise

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is her estimate of the number of healthy children under 5 years of age for whom foster-parents are being sought by social services departments.

Dr. Owen

I regret that no information is collected to enable such an estimate to be made. My hon. Friend may, however, care to refer to the survey "Children Who Wait", published by the Association of British Adoption Agencies in October 1973 in which it was estimated that out of about 5,400 children in England and Wales needing family placement, 35 per cent.—about 1,900—were under 5 and that of these 56 per cent.—about 1,100—were free from problems of health and development. However, the authors of the survey stressed that information on the latter point was neither complete nor necessarily accurate.

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