Removing assessment deadlines ‘could hinder funding’ – 7/20/2011 – Community Care


 

Removing assessment deadlines ‘could hinder funding’

Molly Garboden

Wednesday 20 July 2011 15:02

Removing assessment deadlines will make it more difficult for children’s services to secure funding from councils, according to a former director.

The warning follows the government’s pledge to remove the statutory duties on assessment deadlines and the distinction between initial and core assessments.

But today Deborah Absalom, former director of young people’s services in Bexley, Greater London, said although targets had hindered social work practice, they had helped directors fight for money.

“They have made the need for funding very clear in local authorities where you have to fight for resources in that area,” she told the CIPFA conference on social care funding.

“On a practice level, Munro rightly recommended we lessen that target-driven culture, but I think children’s services will have a much harder time arguing their case when they don’t have those hard numbers to fall back on.”

Absalom, now a children’s services consultant, said she did not know of anything children’s services departments could do to prepare for this change, adding “it’s very wait-and-see”.

But there was some hope in Graham Allen’s reports on early intervention. “There is good work going on about cost models in early intervention,” she told Community Care. “People are looking at how we get some hard evidence together about services. That’s really positive.”

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