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Children’s Services Co-operation Act (Northern Ireland) 2015


10.The Member carried out a twelve-week consultation on the policies behind the Act in Spring 2012. The consultation document was sent to approximately 200 organisations and all Assembly Members and Northern Ireland Members of Parliament. A total of 26 responses were received. Every respondent supported the principles of the Act and the introduction of a statutory duty to co-operate on children’s services.

11.Of those respondents who directly answered the relevant questions:

  • every respondent stated that the introduction of a duty to co-operate would make co-operation more likely;

  • every respondent stated that there was presently a lack of collaboration within government in relation to children’s services;

  • every respondent stated that greater collaboration between government departments and agencies would improve the outcomes for children and young people;

  • every respondent expressed strong support for an enabling power to pool budgets;

  • some respondents highlighted that they considered an enabling power to pool budgets absolutely essential; and

  • every respondent stated that there was currently insufficient co-operation in planning, commissioning and delivering children’s services and in the pooling of budgets.

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