moneyThe All Party Parliamentary Group for Children (APPGC) has launched an inquiry into local authority run children’s social care asking how services are responding to reduced funding and increased demand.

The inquiry, supported by the National Children’s Bureau, will assess what reforms are needed in order to improve support for vulnerable children and aims to publish its findings by the beginning of 2017.

Tim Loughton MP, co-chair of the APPGC, said: "With the introduction of widespread reforms, a new inspection framework and changes to demand and resourcing, there is an urgent need to establish how local services are adapting to the new climate.

"Of course local authority providers face barriers to delivering effective services for children, but they also innovate and we hope this inquiry will provide a means of sharing that learning, as well as showing where policy and legislation must change."

While the focus of the inquiry will be on children’s social care services in England, the inquiry will seek to draw upon evidence from across the UK in order to share examples of effective practice during a time of new challenges such as radicalisation and child sexual exploitation.

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The APPGC will hear evidence from local authority leaders and service providers and will also draw on the experiences of children, young people and families themselves.

Baroness Howarth of Breckland, co-chair of the APPGC, said: "Over the next months, we will hear from local services about exactly how the needs of families, children and young people are changing and whether the resourcing is adequate to meet these challenges. With so many children who are facing difficulties depending on these services being effective and timely, these questions must be answered urgently."

To find out more about giving evidence to the inquiry visit: www.ncb.org.uk/appgc2016