National review of care allowances: final report and recommendations

A national review of Care allowances was carried out between November 2017 and August 2018. Here is a report on the findings of that review along with 12 recommendations.

Annex A: Core Group Terms of Reference and Membership

The SNP manifesto previously committed to continue to provide practical and financial support for kinship and foster care families, and introduce a new national allowance for kinship care and foster care. The manifesto commitment sharpened the scope of previous work on foster and kinship care allowances to considering options for a national scheme. On 25 July 2017, the Scottish Government announced via a Parliamentary Question its intention to gather together a group of experts to carry out a review of foster care allowances, kinship care allowances and adoption allowances.

The National Review of Care Allowances (the Review) will consider firstly a national approach to care allowances for children living in foster care, and then the implications of this for other equitable groups of children living in kinship care and adoptive placements in Scotland. A national approach should be able to be implemented within the current level of overall funding.

Explore the feasibility of introducing a new national scheme of foster care allowances that delivers parity, equity and sustainability and improves on the current system.

Agree a realistic methodology for calculating national care allowances based on the needs of children living in foster care and equitable, kinship and adoptive care placements.

Consider some broader options for financially remunerating foster carers that might be achieved should funding become available or that could be achieved through new welfare powers being devolved to the Scottish Parliament and the roll out of Universal Credit.

It is anticipated that the review will provide a series of policy options that can be presented to Scottish Ministers and CoSLA leaders for consideration.

The Scottish Government will be responsible for conducting any sector wide consultation that may be required either during and/or following the findings of the Review.

The Review will begin in autumn 2017 with an expected completion date of summer 2018.

The Review Group will have flexibility to agree a schedule of meetings and organise other activities that will help them to complete the tasks of the Review.

Due to the complexities surrounding the individual elements of this Review, the chair has expressed an interest in taking a phased approach which they will present to group members at an introductory meeting. A reference group will support and help to gather views/information from represented bodies to feedback to the core group.

Secretariat and analytical support for meetings will be provided by the Scottish Government.

National Care Allowances Review Group - membership

Core Group

Iona Colvin, Scottish Government (Chair)
Heather Brown, Scottish Government (Secretariat)
Vivien Thomson, Social Work Scotland
Sharon McAlees, Social Work Scotland
Laura Caven, CoSLA
Lauren Bruce, CoSLA
Paul Manning, Executive Director of Finance, South Lanarkshire Council
Sara Lurie, The Fostering Network Scotland
Gill Westwood, Citizens Advice Scotland
Susan Hunter, Citizens Advice Scotland
Scott Dunbar, Edinburgh City Council
Linda Richards, Perth and Kinross Council
Fiona Aitken, Adoption UK (Scotland)
Aileen Shaw, Glasgow City Council (shared duties on the group with Cathy Coll)
Cathy Coll, Glasgow City Council (shared duties on the group with Aileen Shaw)
Euan Kidd, Scotland Excel
Ellen Searle, Scottish Government (Social Security policy)
Miranda McIntosh, Scottish Government ( LAC policy)
Fiona McDiarmid, Scottish Government ( LAC policy)
Tara Clark (Scottish Government ( LAC policy)
Claire Brookes, Scottish Government ( LAC policy)
Sasha Maguire, Scottish Government (Analytical Team)

Note: Scottish Government policy officials may not be required to attend every meeting of the Review core group but proper representation will be ensured depending on agenda items.


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