Our latest policy and campaign briefings on reforms needed to enable more children to be able to live safely within their wider family and our response to consultations by Government and other agencies.
This page includes reports and submissions drawn up by Family Right Group and by the Kinship Care Alliance, which is serviced by Family Rights Group.
Legal Aid Reform 2020
Currently, many grandparents, brothers, sisters and other relatives or friends are not entitled to free legal advice and representation when considering taking on the care of a child who cannot safely remain with the parents. This has significant ramifications for the child and their potential kinship carer, and in some cases has resulted in the kinship carers getting into significant debt. A special guardianship order is a legal order that provides a relative or friend with ‘exclusive’ parental responsibility for a child until they turn 18 years old
The Government in its Legal Action Support Plan in February 2019 committed to “bring forward proposals to expand the scope of legal aid to cover special guardianship orders (SGOs) in private law– by Autumn 2019”. The proposals have not yet been issued but the Government has indicated that they will be published in Spring 2020.
Family Rights Group with other interested legal practitioners and organisations, including the Law Society, Resolution and Association of Lawyers for Children have met with the Ministry of Justice and drawn up a paper setting out realistic changes that could be made to the legal aid regime in respect of potential special guardians, that could have an immediate significant impact.
Welfare Reform and Work Bill 2015
Family Rights Group on behalf of the Kinship Care Alliance is extremely concerned about the potentially negative impact of some of the measures in the Bill on kinship carers. The following briefings sets out our specific concerns.
- Briefing for House of Lords report stage of the Welfare Reform and Work Bill on an amendment to exempt kinship carers from the limiting of child tax credit to 2 children
- Written evidence to the House of Commons Welfare Reform and Work Bill
- Written submission to the Joint Committee on Human Rights
- A briefing to peers on an amendment to exempt kinship carers from the child tax credit two children limit
- Briefing for the House of Lords on an amendment to the Welfare Reform and Work Bill to exempt kinship care households from the benefit cap
- Briefing for the House of Lords on an amendment to the Welfare Reform and Work Bill in respect of exempting kinship carers raising children aged under 5 from work conditionality requirements
• Submission to the Department for Education's draft statutory guidance for local authorities on family and friends care, drafted by Family Rights Group on behalf of the Kinship Care Alliance, June 2010
• Briefing about unique standards required for family and friends carers in response to Government's consultation on Fostering National Minimum Standards - Drafted by Family Rights Group on behalf of the Kinship Care Alliance, December 2009
• Our submission to the House of Commons Children, Schools and Families Select Committee (plus appendix) Enquiry on Looked-after Children. Our submission focuses on the role of the state in supporting relatives raising children who cannot live with their parents, March 2008