Department of Health and Social Care
New support to help children living with alcohol-dependent parents
The measures will give children living with alcoholic parents fast access to support and advice.
New plans announced today by Health and Social Care Secretary Jeremy Hunt will help identify at-risk children more quickly, and provide them with rapid access to support and advice.
The package of measures is backed by £6 million in joint funding from the Department of Health and Social Care and the Department for Work and Pensions. It is designed to help an estimated 200,000 children in England living with alcohol-dependent parents.
The measures include:
- fast access to support and mental health services for children and their families where there is a dependent drinker
- quicker identification of at-risk children, including those undertaking inappropriate care responsibilities
- the provision of outreach programmes to get more parents successfully through addiction treatment
- early intervention programmes to reduce the numbers of children needing to go into care
Local authorities will be invited to bid for funding by coming up with innovative solutions based on local need, with priority given to areas where more children are affected. Public Health England will be responsible for working with the funded areas to monitor progress.
The package of interventions, totalling up to £6 million, includes:
- a £4.5 million innovation fund for local authorities to develop plans that improve outcomes for children of alcohol-dependent parents
- £1 million to fund national capacity building by non-governmental organisations
The new funding follows government investment last year of £500,000 to expand national helplines for children with alcoholic parents.
Health and Social Care Secretary Jeremy Hunt said:
The consequences of alcohol abuse are devastating for those in the grip of an addiction–but for too long, the children of alcoholic parents have been the silent victims. This is not right, nor fair.
These measures will ensure thousands of children affected by their parent’s alcohol dependency have access to the support they need and deserve.
Some things matter much more than politics, and I have been moved by my Labour counterpart Jon Ashworth’s bravery in speaking out so honestly about life as the child of an alcoholic. I pay tribute to him and MPs with similar experiences across the House who have campaigned so tenaciously to turn their personal heartache into a lifeline for children in similar circumstances today.
The Health and Social Care Secretary has also appointed a dedicated minister with specific responsibility for children with alcohol-dependent parents. Steve Brine MP will lead this work in addition to his role as public health minister.
Public Health Minister Steve Brine said:
All children deserve to feel safe—and it is a cruel reality that those growing up with alcoholic parents are robbed of this basic need.
Exposure to their parent’s harmful drinking leaves children vulnerable to a host of problems both in childhood and later in life—and it is right that we put a stop to it once and for all.
I look forward to working with local authorities and charities to strengthen the services that make a real difference to young people and their families.
Latest News from
Department of Health and Social Care
New commitments in the fight against antimicrobial resistance24/06/2019 13:10:00
Professor Dame Sally Davies will become UK special envoy on antimicrobial resistance (AMR), and details announced on funding UK’s work in global fight against AMR.
Holidaymakers urged to put MMR checks top of any travel plans24/06/2019 10:10:10
PHE and travel industry call on holidaymakers and other travellers to check their MMR vaccinations are up-to-date, as measles outbreaks continue across Europe.
Leading the world in developing innovative technologies for patients14/06/2019 16:10:00
Baroness Blackwood yesterday spoke at the Association of British HealthTech Industries (ABHI) UK Market Conference.
Adding folic acid to flour: public asked views14/06/2019 10:10:10
Plans to add folic acid to flour in the UK could prevent up to 200 birth defects a year, Public Health Minister, Seema Kennedy, yesterday announced.
Embracing AI and technology to improve patient outcomes13/06/2019 13:47:00
Baroness Blackwood yesterday spoke at CogX, the festival of artificial intelligence (AI) and emerging technology.
£5 million fund to develop support for unpaid carers13/06/2019 10:10:10
The Carers Innovation Fund will invest in new projects to improve carers’ wellbeing.
Listeria cases being investigated10/06/2019 15:10:00
An investigation is underway into cases of listeria linked to sandwiches.
Government review confirms local authorities will continue to commission public health services10/06/2019 13:51:00
Review recommends that councils and the NHS work more closely to co-commission public health services, including sexual and reproductive health services.