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Local services are on the brink of collapse and will be damaged beyond recognition if the Government fails to plug an £8 billion funding gap, council leaders have warned. Chancellor Philip Hammond's next spending review will be "make or break" for authorities that are already under huge funding pressures, the…
The Government faces renewed calls for buffer zones around abortion clinics after a High Court judge upheld a ban on protests outside a London facility. Ealing Council was the first in the country to create a 100-metre protest-free zone outside a Marie Stopes clinic in the west London borough following…
Nearly all of England's council leaders believe there is a major funding crisis in social care and want national taxes ploughed into sorting it out, according to a study. More than half of town hall bosses wanted hikes to income tax to be part of the solution and were opposed…
Council bosses are to pay for a Polish boy living with foster carers in Wales to have Polish lessons, a family court judge has said. Mr Justice Francis said the boy was now aged around nine and had spent the first six years of his life in Poland before being…
A baby whose father lives in a "complicated" relationship with two women should be placed for adoption, a family court judge has decided. The man was living with the little boy's mother and "another woman", Judge Sarah Lynch was told. A psychologist who assessed the family said the relationship was…
A foster carer who sued her former agency over allegations that prevented her from working has accepted substantial damages at the High Court. Francine West brought proceedings for defamation, malicious falsehood and breach of the Data Protection Act against 24Seven Fostering Services. Her solicitor, Dominic Garner, told Judge Richard Parkes…
Grandparents, not council bosses, should have responsibility for two boys who have been at the centre of Family Court litigation, appeal judges have ruled. A Family Court judge had decided that the boys, aged five and two, should be taken from the care of their mother and live with their…
Laura McHarrie, a social worker with Dumfries and Galloway Council, has won the Andrew Cornwell Memorial Award for the highest performing graduate in The Open University’s social work programme in Scotland. Laura (pictured, left) was presented with a certificate and book token at the Council Headquarters in Dumfries by Rosanna…
Nearly 200 children a day are being placed on plans to protect them from neglect and abuse, research has found. Children's services are being "pushed to the brink" by the demands of dealing with the equivalent of six classrooms' worth of pupils every day who are at risk of significant…
A suicide awareness drive is being launched in the Grenfell Tower neighbourhood amid mounting concern about the disaster's psychological fallout. Kensington and Chelsea Council is spearheading the Ok Not To Feel Ok campaign alongside health agencies and charities, in an effort to encourage people to speak about mental health. Figures…
A family court judge has criticised social services staff over their handing of a case involving an injured baby, but kept the name of the council they work for secret. Judge Thomas Greensmith said the way a social worker had gathered and recorded evidence had been "wholly inappropriate". He also…
Four out of five council workers have no confidence in the future of local services because of spending cuts, new research reveals. A study by Unison found that most local authority employees believe residents do not receive the help and support when they need it. A survey of 21,000 workers…
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