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Plans to turn around the lives of 1,590 troubled families
COUNTY chiefs are set to introduce tailored plans and one-to-one support to turn around the lives of 1,590 troubled families in Hampshire.
The aim is to break a cycle of living on benefits, low educational achievement and antisocial behaviour which can span generations.
The Government has promised to pay local authorities up to £4,000 per family for reducing truancy, cutting crime or getting parents back to work.
Ministers say 120,000 problem families in England cost taxpayers £9 billion each year and want to turn these around by 2015.
The county council’s Cabinet will today be asked to approve a strategy and funding for the scheme.
Hampshire has been promised a three-year £5.3m pot of Government money with payment by results for 40 per cent of it. In addition, the county has agreed to contribute £900,000.
Under the Government programme, the county will lead various agencies dealing with these families in an effort to join up services, including social services, housing departments, schools, doctors, police and probation officials.
Council leader Councillor Ken Thornber said: “This will be challenging work, and it is crucial we have the right strategy in place so that the programme brings long-term benefits not only to the families with which the partners will work but also for the wider community.”
The aim is to deal with inter-linked issues of a whole family, rather than individual members or single problems.
For each family, a single plan will be developed with the emphasis on early help and prevention. The progress of each family will be tracked.
An estimated 495 of the most dysfunctional families could get daily visits from a single key worker.
Support for the other 1,095 families may involve better co-ordination and targeting of existing services.
The council plans to go out to tender for private companies to provide intensive family support at an estimated cost of £3.3m a year, starting in April 2013.