HC Deb 30 March 1994 vol 240 cc890-1W
Ms Primarolo

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans or guidelines she has for ensuring that children, subject to care orders, return to a family environment as soon as possible.

Mr. Bowis

Part III of the Children Act 1989 emphasises the duty on local authorities to provide services to support parents in bringing up children in need in their own home and to work in partnership with parents in looking after children away from home. The Children Act "Guidance and Regulations Volume 3", on family placements, contains guidance on the planned return of a child to his family after a placement with another carer under a care order. This takes into account the views of parents along with the views of the child—where he is of sufficient understanding—so far as this is practicable and in the best interests of the child.

Ms Primarolo

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many children in each year of age up to 18 years with care orders are(a) placed with foster families, (b) in homes and (c) in neither; and how many are placed with foster families who are relatives.

Mr. Bowis

Information available centrally is shown in the table.

Total Foster placement total With relative or friends Other placement Community homes Other
17 3,500 1,400 230 1,200 330 1,700
18 300 100 10 90 30 170

Figures are rounded to the nearest 100 for estimates a thousand or more and to the nearest 10 otherwise.

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