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LONDON YOUTH PENS

08 January 2020

Children & Young People Now have published a piece on the youth sector’s response to the review by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) of the statutory guidance on local authorities providing youth services. You can read the full article here.

The article quotes London Youth’s response to the consultation, which you can find in full here.

London Youth’s response states it supports a strengthened duty to ensure appropriate youth provision is available in every community.

“We believe youth provision in the UK should be put on a strong and clear statutory basis, ensuring universal provision, clear responsibility for delivery, appropriate resources and support, and long-term ringfenced funding at pre-2010 levels,” it states.

There is widespread agreement that the term “reasonably practicable” from the Education Act 1996 that underpins the 2012 guidance is not strong enough.

“This duty has not been sufficient legal protection to prevent many local authorities from dramatically shrinking their youth offers in response to government funding cuts since 2011/12,” says London Youth’s consultation response.

This has resulted in different interpretations of the guidance across areas, with London Youth citing data showing one inner London borough spends £3 per head on youth provision, while another spends £69 per head.

“Some London boroughs have made particularly deep cuts, which has led to a worrying variance in the quality of youth provision available in different parts of London,” its response states.