The aim of the Taskforce is to raise awareness about, and support for, children in kinship care and to highlight the importance of this option for children who cannot live with their parents. The chair of the Taskforce is Catherine McKinnell MP
Since the Taskforce was set up in December 2018 by former parliamentarian Anna Turley in conjunction with Family Rights Group, thousands of kinship carers and the children they are raising have shared their evidence and experiences with members of the Taskforce.
Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the launch of the Taskforce’s report setting out its findings, vision for the future and key recommendations was postponed until 30 September 2020. In the meantime the Taskforce commissioned a survey specifically into the experiences of kinship carers and the children they are raising during the Pandemic, the results of which have been published.
Follow the work of the Taskforce on Twitter @KinshipCarePT.
Watch the virtual launch of the Parliamentary Taskforce report on Kinship Care
Read the report of the Parliamentary Taskforce on Kinship Care:
First Thought Not Afterthought: Report of the Parliamentary Taskforce on Kinship Care, September 2020
The report summarises research and evidence gathered by the Taskforce and makes a series of recommendations for Government, local authorities and other public agencies to help deliver a vision for kinship care.
Executive Summary of the Report of the Parliamentary Taskforce on Kinship Care
Gathering your evidence and ideas
The Taskforce has carried out an extensive evidence-gathering exercise. Thousands of kinship carers and the children they are raising have shared their experiences with us, as have legal and social work practitioners, local and national decision makers and organisations working with kinship care families. This evidence is summarised in the Taskforce report and has informed the Taskforce’s vision and recommendations be launched on 30 September 2020.
Other published reports produced on behalf of the Taskforce:
Kinship carers during coronavirus, January 2021
In January 2021, Family Rights Group (on behalf of The Parliamentary Taskforce on Kinship Care) conducted a survey of kinship carers’ experiences during the latest stage of the pandemic. They survey was filled in by 605 kinship carers raising 889 kinship children. The report provides a detailed analysis of the survey and sets out recommendations for urgent Government action.
Kinship carers’ experiences during the coronavirus crisis, May 2020
Responding to the pandemic, over five days during Easter 2020 Family Rights Group (on behalf of The Parliamentary Taskforce on Kinship Care) conducted a survey of kinship carers’ experiences during the crisis. More than 650 kinship carers raising over 1000 kinship care children filled in the survey. The report provides a detailed analysis of the survey and sets out recommendations.
News and activities from the Taskforce
1 February 2021 The Taskforce published its report on the experience of kinship carers during the latest stage of the pandemic. New survey research shows that kinship carers are facing severe strains on their capacity to balance health, financial hardship and the wellbeing and educational needs of children who might otherwise be in the care system. Read the press release here.
30 September 2020 The Taskforce press release on its report, based upon evidence gathered over the last 18 months from 1000s of kinship carers, from young people, practitioners, organisations working with kinship care families and decision makers.
6 May 2020 The Taskforce published its report on kinship care households’ experiences during the Pandemic. The report reveals that the Coronavirus pandemic is increasing the pressure on already vulnerable kinship care families.
A letter to the Prime Minister was signed by 57 parliamentarians, who are members and supporters of the Parliamentary Taskforce on Kinship Care. They highlighted the specific challenges facing kinship carers during the Pandemic. They also urged the Prime Minister to help ease the situation of kinship carers and avoid placements breaking down, resulting in more children entering the care system.
17 March 2020 Catherine McKinnell MP, Chair of the Taskforce, wrote to Government departments asking them as a matter of urgency to consider the needs and circumstances of kinship carers, including those aged over 70 years old, those with a serious underlying health condition or who are raising a child with such a condition.
5 March 2020 Parliamentarians, who are members of the Taskforce, wrote to the Chancellor, asking him to invest in families who provide a safe and loving home to children who would otherwise enter or remain in care. The letter sets out six measures that the Chancellor should take.
The launch of the Taskforce
The Taskforce was launched at an event in Parliament on the 5th December 2018. Speakers included Nadhim Zahawi MP, then-Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children and Families. Other speakers included kinship carer Enza and her grandson Bradley, and Cathy Ashley, Chief Executive of Family Rights Group and the founder of the Taskforce, Anna Turley..
Those attending included Alex Chalk MP, Alex Cunningham MP, Helen Hayes MP, Mike Hill MP, Kevan Jones MP, Kerry McCarthy MP, Baroness Armstrong, Baroness Drake, alongside kinship carers, civil servants from the Department for Education and representatives from organisations within the Kinship Care Alliance including Coram BAAF, Family Rights Group, Grandparents Plus, and Kinship Carers UK.