[London Evening Standard November 11 2010]
The body responsible for looking after the interests of vulnerable children in the family courts was exposed as “not fit for purpose” in the wake of a large rise in cases following the Baby P tragedy, MPs said today.
Children suffered as the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) “failed to get to grips with fundamental weaknesses in its culture, management and performance” following a 34% increase in its caseload, leading to “chaos across the family justice system”.
“These problems have been to the detriment of children”, the report by the Commons’ Public Accounts Committee (PAC) found.
Margaret Hodge, the committee’s chairwoman, said: “Cafcass was ill-prepared for the very large increase in care cases in 2009-10 which followed the Baby Peter tragedy and caused chaos in the family justice system.
“This lack of readiness was a direct result of the…
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