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LGA responds to legal challenge on councils prioritising in-house fostering services

Cllr David Simmonds, Local Government Association spokesman, commented on the legal challenge from the Nationwide Association of Fostering Providers that alleges councils are failing in their duties to children by prioritising their in-house fostering services over those of other providers.

"This Judicial Review is nothing to do with the interests of children but is entirely about the financial interests of these providers, who often charge taxpayers double or more what councils pay for in-house provision. 

"This review does a disservice to the many independent providers who work closely alongside councils to provide placements for children when in-house options may not be suitable. However, where social workers know that a council foster carer will be able to provide a stable, loving environment for a child, this legal action will only result in unnecessary delays in making that placement. This will be costly to the taxpayer and, most importantly, costly to the child.

"With most councils still maintaining high quality foster care provision for a wide range of children's needs despite 40% budget reductions, we will robustly contest this case as taxpayers do not need to be ripped off any further."

Read the legal challenge from the Nationwide Association of Fostering Providers against Bristol City Council, Leeds City Council and Suffolk County Council.

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