Children's services budget up 6.2% for 2019-2020
Financial release shows that councils are budgeting £9.1 billion for children's services
Published on 28th June 2019
Children’s services have budgeted £9.1 billion in 2019-20, according to a Local Government Finance Statistical Release.
The £9.1 billion is up £535 million or 6.2% compared to the 2018-19 budget, the release confirms.
The largest changes within the budget are from expenditure on looked after children, which continues to be the highest budgeted area of spend at £4.5 billion, up by £352 million (8.4%) compared to 2018-19 budget and safeguarding of children at £2.2 billion, up by £188 million (9.2%) from the previous year.
Total expenditure on local government services is budgeted to be £96.2 billion in 2019-20, which is £3.6 billion (3.8%) higher than the £92.6 billion budgeted for 2018-19.
Alongside children's social care, the other largest increases are:
- Adult social care which is budgeted at £16.8 billion in 2019-20, up £668 million (4.1%) compared to 2018-19 budget.
- Police services which is budgeted at £12.1 billion in 2019-20, up £756 million (6.7%) compared to 2018-19 budget.
- Highways and transport: £4.9 billion budgeted in 2019-20, up £613 million (14.4%) compared to 2018-19 budget.
"Adult Social Care and Children’s social care are large elements of council expenditure, and whose expenditure accounts for 17% and 9% across all expenditure of all authorities," said the release.
Matt Dunkley, Chair of the Association of Directors of Children's Services Resources and Sustainability Policy Committee, said: “These statistics show that councils remain committed to protecting spend on statutory children’s services – collectively councils plan to spend £9.1 billion on these services in 2019/20, up £535 million from the year before. What the data doesn’t show is the tough decisions councils will continue to have to make in order to manage rising need for services and reducing budgets. Local authorities are having to divert funding away from the very services that help children and families earlier as needs arise and reduce future demand e.g. children’s centres and youth services as well as other services that are valued by our communities, such as bin collections and libraries. The Treasury must recognise that this is neither a sensible nor sustainable fiscal approach and is only storing up huge financial and human costs for the future.”
Local Authority Revenue Expenditure and Financing: 2019-20 Budget, England
"The largest changes within the budget are from expenditure on looked after children and safeguarding."Tweet
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