Medway Council sees 26% increase in children in care

The number of young people in local authority care in Kent has increased by 26% over the past 15 months.

Medway Council said the rise, from 349 to 441, was down to "a combination of things".

The Tory-run council said more people were referring concerns about children following the death of Baby P in Haringey, north London, in 2007.

In a statement, a council spokesman said the recession had been another factor behind the increase.

'Serious questions'

"Over the past few years the recession has affected parents across the country and this can cause particular pressures for some families," he said.

"Despite this increase, and these pressures, Medway has an excellent record for placing children in stable placements with local foster carers."

Councillor Adam Price, of the opposition Labour Party, said the increase raised "serious questions".

He said: "We don't know how high this peak is going to go."

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