25 October 2013
The Children’s Policy Group has been praised by independent inspectors for bringing a clear direction for children’s services in Jersey.
The Care Inspectorate returned to the Island this year to examine any progress made in children’s homes, therapeutic units, foster care and in young people leaving care.
The follow-up report is published today, Friday 25 October, and highlights a number of important improvements. These include increased confidence in leadership and a better understanding of the direction of children’s services.
Some areas were listed as needing further attention, including developing better means of gathering accurate information and the need for an ongoing review into potential improvements towards residential care.
Encouraging improvements across the Island
“Our inspectors found encouraging improvements in services for looked after children and young people in Jersey,” said Annette Bruton, Chief Executive of the Care Inspectorate. “These included a new structure for children’s services, increased confidence in strategic leadership and some positive outcomes for children and young people who are looked after in foster care and in residential units.
Deputy Anne Pryke, Minister for Health and Social Services and Chair of the Children’s Policy Group, said she was delighted that improvements had been highlighted by the Care Inspectorate.
“Since the Williamson Report in 2008 a great deal of work has taken place to improve services for looked after children,” she said. “The progress since the original Care Inspectorate report in January 2012 has been excellent, reflecting a great deal of hard work by staff across a number of agencies, and invaluable input from many of the children and young people involved.”
Greater say for those involved
Children and young people are also described as having a greater say regarding their care, and that they feel more involved and enthusiastic about it. Young people with a direct experience of the Jersey care services were given the opportunity to be trained and supported by the Care Inspectorate, and were then asked about their views on children and young people in care.
Annette Bruton added “There is scope to give more prominence to the views of children and young people about how services can be better, and we recommend that priority is given to some recommendations where progress has been slower.”