Appeal issued over private fostering

Published: 10th May 2012

Please note this is an archived Press Release

AN appeal has been issued for residents to help protect the welfare of local children - by flagging up cases of private fostering.

Arrangements when someone who is not a close relative cares for another person's child for 28 days or more are considered private fostering - and Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council needs to be notified of them.

The authority wants to hear from anyone who has made such arrangements, or is aware of others doing so, to allow officials to ensure children are properly cared for and given any support required.

The Council is particularly asking people who work with children to think more about private fostering and act immediately if they are aware that such an arrangement is in place.

Private fostering laws apply to children aged under 16, or 18 if they have disabilities.

Children can end up being privately fostered for a host of reasons, from parents separating to being sent to the UK for healthcare or education by families living overseas.

Anyone planning to privately foster should alert the Council at least six weeks before the child comes to live with them, or within 48 hours if it occurs in an emergency situation.

Councillor Joan Guy, the Council's Cabinet Member for Children's Services and Education, said: "It is often the case that people who are privately fostering children do not know that they need to make the Council aware.

"However, the safety and well-being of children is, of course, of paramount importance and it is vital that we are notified of such cases."

Private fostering arrangements can be reported to the Council on 01642 771500.

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