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Podcast: Bishop Philip North on the crisis in children’s social care

12 January 2024

Diocese of Blackburn

The Bishop of Blackburn, the Rt Revd Philip North

The Bishop of Blackburn, the Rt Revd Philip North

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The Bishop of Blackburn, the Rt Revd Philip North, is seeking to draw attention to the impact that the privatisation of the care system is having on vulnerable children. In his diocese, he writes in the Church Times, the number of care homes has risen significantly in recent years, “not because there is a disproportionate increase in demand for children’s care places in Lancashire. It is because these are towns where housing is cheap and where labour costs are low.”

He continues: “Almost unseen, the children’s care sector has been taken over by private suppliers. Now, of course, there is nothing wrong with profit in and of itself, and I have no doubt that many individual staff members are skilled and dedicated. But I, for one, feel deeply uncomfortable about the rapacious way many of these companies are operating. . .

“Instead of putting the vulnerable child in the place of honour, in the UK that child has been monetised. It is hard to imagine a greater trauma than the collapse of one’s home life and being taken into care. Yet that misery is being exploited. Desperate children have become a tradable commodity.”

On the podcast this week, Bishop North talks about his concerns, and considers how churches can help children who are in care.

Click the play button above to listen to this podcast. You can also listen to the Church Times Podcast on the Church Times app for iPhone and iPadSoundCloud, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and most other podcast platforms. Music for the podcast is by Twisterium


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