Welfare Checklist (PLO) 2008 introduced to ensure children are placed with relatives rather than in care

Mrs L Taylor (Account suspended) made this Freedom of Information request to Sunderland City Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was refused by Sunderland City Council.

Mrs L Taylor (Account suspended)

Dear Sir or Madam,


December 2006 - Evidence shows children in care are being let down
and suffer more than those placed with relatives.

We are interested to see how the introduction of the PLO (Public
Law Outline) Welfare Checklist 2008 has altered the outcomes for

I would be grateful if under the FOIA you could advise how many
times your Local Authority has applied for care orders via the
Family Courts WITHOUT the Welfare checklist set out in section 1 of
the Children Act 1989 being completed. The completion of the
Welfare Checklist would confirm that extended family members had in
fact been contacted prior to any application for a care order.

Whoever signs the application for a care order is responsible for
ensuring that the Welfare checklist has been fully completed,
please state who within your authority holds this position.

‘The Government recognises the importance of family members taking
care of children who cannot be cared for by their parents. We know
that a child brought up by a family member benefits from living
with someone they already know and trust rather than a stranger.
The Children Act 1989 placed a duty on local authorities to support
the upbringing of children by their families wherever possible, and
that services should be provided to children in need and their
families to enable this to happen.

There is now an increased focus on the steps that must be taken
prior to any court proceedings. Unless it is necessary to take
emergency action to protect a child from immediate harm, the local
authority must undertake various steps before initiating care
proceedings. Welfare checklist set out in section 1 of the Children
Act 1989’

Yours faithfully,

Mrs L Taylor

Mark Anderson, Sunderland City Council

Dear Mrs Taylor
I confirm that your request for information has been received and is
receiving attention.
The Council aims to provide available information promptly and in any
event within 20 working days, unless, exceptionally, there is a need to
consider whether the information is exempt from disclosure. Please note
that there may be a charge for providing copies of the information. If the
cost of complying with your request in full exceeds £450, we will ask you
to reconsider your request, or to pay a fee before the information is
supplied. If we need to ask you to refine your request or to pay a charge
or fee we will let you know.

Mark Anderson
Managers Assistant
Telephone 0191 561 2464
e-mail [email address]

Customer Number: 1230
Request Number: 1840

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Nick Humphreys, Sunderland City Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mrs Taylor
Please find attached Sunderland City Council's response to your Freedom
of Information request. Please accept my apologies for the protracted
delay in responding to you, and any inconvenience caused as a result of
the delay.
Kind Regards

Nick Humphreys
Information Sharing and Management Officer
Children's Services
Business Development Team
Room 4.1
Civic Centre
0191 561 1303
[email address]

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