Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Cabinet Decision: 14th February 2019
Title of Item/Report
Reporting-in Scrutiny Review of the Care Leavers Local Offer
Record of the Decision
Consideration was given to a report on the progress of reporting in review of care leavers local offer. It included detail of the new guidance and legislation outlining the duties for local authorities to support care leavers to be known as the care leaver's local offer. It outlined the care leavers local offer and plans for the development of the care leaver's local offer.

In consultation with a group of care leavers existing local offer had been reviewed to consider if the services and support on offer meet the requirements of the Government's Statutory Guidance. The existing local offer is compliant with the legislation.

During this exercise some additional ideas had been developed from the young people and staff involved that may need the support of other departments and partner agencies.

The local offer was already available to care leavers in the form of an information booklet however it also needed to be published in digital format and with that in mind care leavers have been involved in developing a site on the Stockton Information Directory (SID) and this was now available to care leavers.

The current local offer and some of the ideas that came up for development as a result of the consultation with care leavers and staff and progress to date was attached to the report.

The Children and Young People Select Committee welcomed the opportunity to review the new guidance and legislation outlining the duties for local authorities to support care leavers to be known as the care leaver's Local Offer.

In September 2018, Members were provided with the details of the current Offer, and the proposals to develop this further.

The Children and Young People Select Committee was pleased to see current offer was compliant with the legislation and the engagement with care leavers to seek their views on further improvements.

This work had generated a range of new ideas from young people. It was recognised that some of these may need the support from partner organisations. The Children and Young People Select Committee itself highlighted the importance of the following issues:

a. The Health and Wellbeing offer including a section on sexual health, and emotional and mental health and wellbeing;
b. LGBT information;
c. Support for those who are/have been in contact with the criminal justice system (through ongoing support from Personal Advisors);
d. Money advice and financial awareness.

Members of the Children and Young People Select Committee were reassured that care leavers who had initially declined ongoing support were reminded of their right to receive support should they wish to receive it.

It was noted that funding had been provided from central government but it was not clear whether this would fund all commitments to care leavers, and there had been national criticisms of the New Burdens assessment process in this regard.

Members of the Children and Young People Select Committee noted the development of the online format of the Local Offer and welcomed the opportunity to receive a demonstration of the site when finalised.

The Children and Young People Select Committee endorsed the recommendations and ongoing work in the lead up to publication of the updated Offer in April 2019.

RESOLVED that:-

1. Care leavers continue to be engaged on the content of the local offer.

2. The format of the offer on the Stockton Information Directory continue to be developed.

3. Work continues towards publication of the full offer by April 2019.
Reasons for the Decision
To ensure that the Council continues to prioritise the needs of care leavers whilst making the most effective and efficient use of resources.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected
None.
Declared (Cabinet Member) Conflicts of Interest
None.
Details of any Dispensations
N/A
Date and Time by which Call In must be executed
Midnight, 23 February 2019
Attachment

Date of Publication: 19 February 2019


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