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local authority duty to promote contact
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local authority duty to promote contact

—(1) It shall be the general duty of every local authority(in addition to the other duties imposed on them by this Part)— (a) to safeguard and promote the welfare of … Contact while in care Section 8 of the 2014 Act tidies up an inconsistency in the 1989 Act by inserting in s 34 a reference to a local authority's duty under s 22(3)(a), namely the duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of any looked-after child. the local authority’s duty to return a looked after child to his/her family unless this is against his/her interests; and the local authority’s duty, unless it is not reasonably practicable or consistent with his/her welfare, to endeavour to promote contact between a looked after child and his/her parents or others. As a councillor you will automatically have access to the full range of services that we provide. Local authorities are bound by statute. Using the equality duty to challenge the priorities of public bodies. It covers a local authority’s duty to safeguard and promote a child’s welfare and make such services available for children as are reasonable, specifically in relation to placing the child in suitable accommodation and preparing a care plan. Section 34 and paragraph 15(1) [Schedule 2] CA 1989 states only that the Local Authority must ‘endeavour to promote contact’ and ‘allow reasonable contact’. There is no express wording within section 34 that states that the Local Authority must promote contact through face-to-face meetings. The recently passed Coronavirus Bill and corresponding Guidance is unfortunately silent as to any relaxation of a Local Authority’s statutory duty under the Children Act 1989 to promote contact between a child in care and any relevant party as per section 34 and Schedule 2 paragraph 15 under the current circumstances. The 1988 Road Traffic Act puts a 'statutory duty' on the local authorities to deliver an appropriate road safety education service and for the provision of a safe local road network. The recently passed Coronavirus Bill[1] and corresponding Guidance[2] is unfortunately silent as to any relaxation of a Local Authority’s statutory duty under the Children Act 1989 to promote contact between a child in care and any relevant party as per section 34 and Schedule 2 paragraph 15 under the current circumstances. There are legal consequences for local authorities resulting from their corporate status. The definition of well-being is wide and can encompass looking out for someone's personal dignity, physical health, mental health … Paragraph 2.78 of 2015 Guidance[4] outlines  the presumption that there should be continued contact between the child and their family whilst the child is in the care of the Local Authority. Whilst guidance has been issued concerning private law cases and children moving between households, that guidance does not assist in this instance. E+W (1) Where a child is in the care of a local authority, the authority shall (subject to the provisions of this section) [F1 and their duty under section 22(3)(a)] [F2 or, where the local authority is in Wales, under section 78(1)(a) of the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014] allow the child reasonable contact with— 3. area of the authority. 1. Due to the increasing risk that Covid-19 poses on the safe facilitation of contact, Local Authorities may consider suspending contact arrangements. The Local Authority’s duty towards its supervising staff and foster carers means that exposing them to numerous families contact sessions is unlikely to be safe. When must the local authority assess me? To support Scottish public authorities in meeting their equality duties, the Commission has produced non-statutory guidance which is available on our Scotland pages.The guides provide an overview of the public sector equality duty, including the general equality duty, the specific duties and who they apply to. Such  an order may not be suitable where none of the relevant parties are showing any signs of Covid-19 symptoms and have not had contact with any other person who is symptomatic. The Local Authority has a duty to ensure independent advocacy is available and it is breach of this duty if advocacy is not available when needed. When placement for adoption has been authorised for that child, the … There are also resource implications at a time when many workers may be self-isolating and working from home, or absent through sickness. These measures make it easier to set up new local councils and promote diversity through the appointment of additional councillors. For example, our Map of Gaps enforcement work which focused on local authority service provision for women who have suffered violence under the previous gender equality duty. However, the Local Authority is only under a duty to promote contact between the child and the parents and/or connected persons, ‘unless it is not reasonably practicable or consistent with his welfare’[6]. The local authority might think that you may have a need for care and support if: You tell them about it yourself. Given the pace of Government advice that is being sent out, this advice may be superseded by Government Guidelines forthwith. In the midst of the Coronavirus outbreak (‘Covid-19’), there has been little guidance as to whether Local Authorities have the ability to suspend contact between a … The local authority is under a legal duty to assess you if: you're an adult, and; it appears that you may have a need for care and support. For further information and discussion about the sc… It includes identification and involvement of other services provided from other sources. However, as Covid-19 and legislation surrounding it progresses and changes, there may be future legislation and guidance continuing to emerge in the near future. The Local Authority may also refuse to allow contact under section 34(4) CA 1989, whereby on an application, the Court may make an order authorising the Authority to refuse to allow contact between the child in care and any person mentioned in section 34(1)(a – d) and named in the order.  However, Thorpe J expressed in the case of Re S (Care: Parental Contact) [2005] 1 FLR 469, CA at [11], ‘a section 34(4) order should not be made… merely against the possibility that circumstances may change in such a way to make termination of contact desirable’. The amended s 34(1) now reads: Local Authorities can refuse to allow contact without making an application to the Court under section 34(6) CA 1989. 4. Given the recent guidance provided by the Government in response to Covid-19, consideration should be given to the safety of the child in care and the safety of the relevant parties. S/h… If one party in unable to travel, consider if it is possible to arrange with the other party to travel for contact instead, if they are able to do so safely. Posts about duty to promote contact written by suesspiciousminds. Any accommodation provided must safeguard and promote … Therefore, the Local Authority will not be in breach of the duty to promote contact if they are unwilling to facilitate in-person contact due to fears of Covid-19. S/he is unlikely to achieve or maintain, or have the opportunity of achieving or maintaining, a reasonable standard of health or development without the help of the services by the local Authority 2. 5 C.F.R. The Local Authority also has a responsibility to its staff, foster carers and to the wider public.  There are also resource implications at a time when many workers may be self-isolating and working from home, or absent through sickness. If any relevant parties were to contract the virus themselves or come into contact with an individual who has had the virus, a suspension of contact for seven days would not be a sufficient period of time to ensure that the virus will not be passed on, particularly in larger households. When you are living away from home the local authority has a duty to promote contact between you and your parents and other members of your family like siblings and grandparents, so long as this is consistent with your welfare. There are 2 two primary routes into the ‘looked after’ system: 1. being Care plans and looked after child reviews ‘Proportionality’ is the key concept to understanding how family law operates. Conserving biodiversity can include restoring or enhancing a population or habitat. This is the default position in the absence of any court orders. If social workers believe they can effectively supervise contact from a distance, so as to ensure the parties are not ‘gathering’, there is a small possibility that open air contact could be carried out as the parent and child’s daily exercise. [5]. 34 Parental contact etc. However, during the current crisis it is likely that the word ‘safeguard’ will form the overriding basis when considering whether contact can be safely carried out. allow children in their care reasonable contact with their parents and certain other people. The amended s 34(1) now reads: 2. The Adoption and Children Act 2002, as fully implemented in September 2005, changed the law in relation to contact for some children in foster care. A local authority may refuse contact to a child 'in care’ for a maximum of seven days, without a section 34 [4] order if it is necessary to do so to safeguard or promote a child’s welfare. Local authority social services. The local authority has a duty to promote contact between a looked-after child and their parents, relatives and friends. The local authority’s general duty under the Act is to promote your wellbeing and it must take account wider legal duties, such as those applying to human rights, equality and discrimination. E+W (1) It shall be the general duty of every local authority (in addition to the other duties imposed on them by this Part)— (a) to safeguard and promote the welfare of children within their area who are in need; and (b) so far as is consistent with that duty, to promote the upbringing of such children by their families, Section 17 states: "17. Generally, personal activities should not be conducted during duty hours. Section 162(2) of the Act states that a local authority must also make arrangements to promote co-operation between the relevant officers of the authority who exercise its … Without the help or provisions of the local authority their development will be significantly or further impaired. In keeping in line with current Government guidance, a distance of at least two metres should be kept between the parties for any in-person meeting. We all hope that this pandemic and health crisis comes to an end soon and contact arrangements can return to normal.  In the meantime all of us must do everything we can to keep everyone, especially the most vulnerable, safe and well. Duties of local authorities in relation to children looked after by them E+W 22 General duty of local authority in relation to children looked after by them. As a public authority in England you have a dutyto have regard to conserving biodiversity as part of your policy or decision making. 7. Due to the very real threat that Covid-19 poses on the public, it is arguable that the circumstances have already changed from what was the status-quo in England, before the virus was classed a ‘pandemic’. Their functions are set out in numerous Acts of Parliament and many of these functions have associated legal duties. As it stands the current laws, regulations and guidance provided is still in force and should be followed. Section 8 of the Children and Families Act 2014 and the Statutory Guidance on Court Orders and Pre-Proceedings place a duty on local authorities to:. If the child in care, relevant parties, or any other individual living within the same household is symptomatic or has been in contact with another individual showing symptoms of the virus or the child is sick with something that might be the virus, then face to face contact should not take place. The local authority, following its duty to promote contact, must allow a child who is the subject of a care order to have reasonable contact with his parents and certain other people, unless directed otherwise by a court order, or unless the local authority temporarily decides to refuse contact in urgent circumstances (Section 34 Children Act It will normally be appropriate for a Cabinet Member to take the lead among A local authority has not only a moral duty but a legal duty to protect the children within their designated area and even more emphasis is placed on children in need within their area. If the household that the child in care presides has windows on the lower floors of the property, which can provide a sufficient view and that can be opened so that the parties can speak to each other, this may allow contact to take place if the carer of the child is agreeable to contact taking place in this manner. The Local Authority will need to review whether contact that has been previously facilitated at Contact Centres should continue and whether the risk posed to contact centre supervisors can be safeguarded against. However, the local authority also has a responsibility at any time to give you advice and guidance on the exercise of your welfare powers. When must the local authority assess me? These duties placed on the local authority can only be discharged with the full co-operation of other partners , many of whom have individual duties when carrying out their functions under section 11 of the Children Act 2004 (see chapter 2). Choose a convenient officeAshbyBurton Upon TrentDerbySwadlincote. If any of the relevant parties are required to travel for contact, public transport should be avoided as this may increase the risk of exposure. The consequence is not only that the relevant parties could contract the virus themselves, but also that they could pass it on, putting others surrounding the parties at an unnecessary risk. A contact order can be used to authorise the local authority to refuse contact between the child and any of the persons with whom the local authority would normally have a duty to allow contact or where in ‘urgent circumstances’ such an order is required to safeguard and PROMOTE … Instead social workers will be obliged to ensure contact arrangements have “clear purpose”, as set out in the child’s care plan. If the Local Authority is concerned that the child in their care would be at risk of coming into contact with a carrier of the virus, it would be arguable that such contact would not be consistent with the child’s welfare. Derby City Council reached a decision yesterday (24th March 2020) to suspend all direct contact.  Contact will be by Skype/Facetime/Zoom/Whatsapp or similar where possible and if not then by telephone.  This is, of course, much more suitable for teenagers than for babies. The extension of the well-being power is … Local Authorities are under a duty to promote ‘reasonable’ contact between the children in their care and their parents. Building capacity with partners to promote … Every local authority must take reasonable steps to identify the extent to which the children in there area are in need. Thus, the practicality of arranging face to face contact poses significant problems particularly as there is no caveat within the current rules for parents to leave their home to travel to contact, placing them in breach of the current rules. [1]https://services.parliament.uk/bills/2019-21/coronavirus.html, [2]https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/bills/cbill/58-01/0122/en/20122en.pdf, [3] any other person named in sections (b) – (e) of section 34(1) CA 1989, [4] The Children Act 1989 Guidance and Regulations: Volume 2: Care planning, Placement and Case Review 2015. A public authority, which is under no statutory obligation to exercise a power, generally owes no common law du… The key new duty for local authorities will be to take appropriate steps to improve the health of their population. Section 95 Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014(previously Schedule 2 paragraph 15 Children Act 1989) says: (1) Where a child is being looked after by a local authority, the authority must, unless it is not reasonably practicable or consistent with the child’s wellbeing, promote contact between the child and— (a) his parents; (b) any person who is not a parent of his but who has … The local authority has a duty to ascertain a child in need's wishes and feelings regarding the accommodation and to give consideration to them. This new duty complements much of the local authority’s existing core business, and its strategic responsibility for stewardship of place. Local Authorities are under a duty to promote ‘reasonable’ contact between the children in their care and their parents. 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