Government confirms extra support for Troubled Families to succeed

photo of young parents and child

Families with deep rooted problems will receive much-needed support to get their lives back on track with up to £165 million of new funding, Communities Secretary Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP announced today (5 January 2020).

The funding for the Troubled Families programme will provide intensive support for some of the most vulnerable families.

Working with the whole family unit across local services, with a focus on early intervention, the programme has a proven track record of driving reforms across public services.

The funding will be used to tackle complex inter-connected problems including unemployment, poor school attendance, mental health issues, anti-social behaviour and domestic abuse.

Communities Secretary Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP said:

The Troubled Families programme will help more people in need get access to the early, practical and coordinated support to transform their lives for the better.

This is the right thing to do for families and for society as a whole, and these reforms will reduce the demand and dependency on costly, reactive key public services.

We want to build on the success of the programme in the coming year, delivering on our manifesto commitment to ensure we reach all those who could benefit from the programme – from the early years and throughout their lives.

Rather than responding to each problem, or single family member separately, assigned Troubled Families keyworkers engage with the whole family. Through this approach they coordinate support from a range of services to identify and address family issues as early as possible rather than merely reacting to crises.

The latest evaluation results show that, compared to families with similar characteristics who have not been on the programme, 19-24 months after starting to receive support: 

  • the proportion of children on the programme going into care has reduced by a third

  • the proportion of adults on the programme going to prison has reduced by a quarter and juvenile convictions reduced by 15%

  • more people on the programme are back in work, with 10% fewer people claiming Jobseekers Allowance.

The programme was originally set to run for 5 years from 2015 to 2020 but was extended by a year in Spending Round 2019. Today £165 million of funding has been confirmed for 2020 to 2021.

Since the current programme began in 2015, 297,733 families have made improvements with the problems that led to them joining the programme. In 26,848 of these families one or more adults has moved off benefits and into work.

Futher information

The current Troubled Families Programme was rolled out in England in April 2015 and replaced the first programme which had been in place since 2012.

The third annual report of the current Troubled Families Programme annual report Building Resilient Families is available.

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