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Government’s Troubled Families programme expanded

The government’s Troubled Families Programme has been expanded to help more children from struggling homes get a better chance in life, the DCLG has stated.

Communities secretary Eric Pickles has outlined that work will begin later this year in the 51 best performing local authorities to help more troubled families who cost the taxpayer tens of thousands of pounds per year without intervention.

As well as expanding from working with school-age children to those under five, the wider programme will also have a particular focus on improving poor health. This comes as new data highlights this is a particular problem in troubled families, with 71% having a physical health problem and 46% a mental health concern.

While retaining its focus on reducing truancy, crime and anti-social behaviour, the expanded programme will apply this approach to a larger group of families with a wider set of problems including domestic violence, debt and children at risk of being taken into care.

Pickles said: “The Troubled Families programme has been a brilliant partnership between the government and councils, changing the way services are run, saving taxpayers money and turning around the lives of some of the hardest to help in the country, with kids back in school, youth crime and anti-social behaviour cut and adults better able to work.

“Building on this momentum, we are now able to help even more families and deal with even more problems and I am delighted that that work will now begin in the next few months.”

The expanded scheme builds on the success of the current programme run by councils, which new figures show is now helping over 110,000 of the most troubled families in England. Of these nearly 53,000 have had their lives turned around thanks to the intensive and practical approach, which works with the whole family on all of its problems

Louise Casey CB, head of the government’s Troubled Families programme, said: “This has been the start of a revolution in the way that we work with our most challenging families and which we need to accelerate in the years ahead.”

At the Spending Review last year it was announced that the Troubled Families programme would be expanded to work with 400,000 more families from 2015 to 2020, with £200m funding for 2015 to 2016. The Budget in March 2014 announced that work with up to 40,000 of these families would begin in this financial year.

The councils who will begin work with up to 40,000 additional families in 2014 are:

  • Barking and Dagenham
  • Barnet
  • Bath and North East Somerset
  • Blackpool
  • Bradford
  • Bristol
  • Bromley
  • Calderdale
  • Derbyshire
  • Dudley
  • Durham
  • Gateshead
  • Greater Manchester (Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford, Wigan)
  • Greenwich
  • Haringey
  • Hartlepool
  • Havering
  • Knowsley
  • Lambeth
  • Leeds
  • Leicestershire
  • Liverpool
  • Merton
  • Middlesbrough
  • Newcastle upon Tyne
  • North Somerset
  • North Yorkshire
  • Oxfordshire
  • Plymouth
  • Poole
  • Redbridge
  • Redcar and Cleveland
  • Richmond upon Thames
  • Sheffield
  • Southampton
  • South Gloucestershire
  • Surrey
  • Wakefield
  • Wandsworth
  • Warwickshire
  • West Berkshire
  • West Sussex

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