Great News for Care Leavers
There has been a very welcome development for Care Leavers this week with local authorities now having new duties to provide additional support to the children that used to be in their care.
All care leavers have the right to support up to age 25
The changes mean that all Care Leavers who are aged between 21 and 25 are now entitled to have a Personal Advisor (PA) appointed to provide them with advice and support - even if they are not in education as used to be the case.
The changes also ensure that all Care Leavers have the right to have their needs assessed and have a Pathway Plan developed with them to set out the support their local authority will provide them to achieve their goals.
This is great news for Care Leavers and means that even those who have had their cases closed to Children’s Services when they turned 21, or when their studies stopped, have the right to have their support restarted if they are still under 25.
Other positive developments
Other good news is that every local authority is now required to consult on and publish information about all the services and support available to their Care Leavers (their “Local Offer”) and ensure that all parts of the local authority (and not just Children’s Services) act in line with their responsibilities as the carers for the young people in, and leaving, their care (their “corporate parenting principles”).
Supporting young people to access their new rights
Coram Voice’s national advocacy advice service Always Heard can assist Care Leavers with the information and advocacy support they may need to ensure that they are fully benefiting from these changes.