Toggle menu

Protected Characteristic Motion for 'Care experienced' people gets go ahead

A move towards achieving greater equality for people who have been in care.

Posted by: Communications team on 24 May 2024 14:44
Logo of West Berkshire Council

A Motion presented in March to give people who've been in care greater protection was approved at a meeting of West Berkshire Council's Executive last night (23 May).

An independent review of children's social care in 2022 highlighted the barriers and discrimination care leavers can face throughout their life and recommended that the government should recognise people who've been through the care system as having a Protected Characteristic.

This means that we would operate voluntarily in a way that protect care experienced people in the same way that those people with legally protected characteristics are supported.

 The 'Macallister Review' showed that:

  •  70% of people who have been in care have a shorter life expectancy
  •   Over half of those in custody up to the age of 21 have been in care
  •   A quarter of the homeless population in England and Wales has experience of the care system.

Councillor Heather Codling, West Berkshire's Executive Member for Children, Education and Young People's Services presented the initial Motion in March this year. 

She said,

"I'm very pleased to have the backing of the Council for this important Motion. There is no doubt that there are often fewer opportunities and poorer outcomes for people who have been in care. This is not only incredibly unfair but mostly unfounded as many care experienced people in West Berkshire are among the most resilient and capable in the district.

"All people should be treated fairly and equally and supporting this as a Protected Characteristic will be a move towards achieving greater equality. We want to stop the negative assumptions that are made about people who have been in care. 

"These perceptions are evidenced in the way that care experience is discussed in schools, workplaces and in the media and can lead to people being refused employment ,failing to succeed in education or facing unfair judgements about their own abilities when they wish to have a family of their own. 

 "As corporate parents we have a responsibility to nurture and support the talents of the young people in our care, and to ensure we assist them to reach their full potential."

Listen to Cllr Codling and one of our care leavers speaking about the Motion here Care experienced as a protected characteristic (youtube.com)

Last modified: 24 May 2024 14:57

Share this page

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share by email