Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Fostering failures?

No doubt the account given in the Times (reported in The Guardian) of a small child who, it is alleged, was fostered by a family where, so it is said, no-one spoke her native language, English, will cause all sorts of hackles to rise across the media and beyond.

There is to be an investigation, so I’d counsel caution before comment until more is known. But what I would say is that, irrespective of what has happened in this case, the main problem with foster parents in Britain is that there aren’t enough of them to meet the continued high demand.

When services are under pressure, compromises are often made. The answer is not to leap up and down fulminating and calling for heads to roll, but to address the shortfalls by coming up with resources and strategies to ensure that every child who needs fostering has foster parents who can fully respond to her or his needs.