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Reforms needed in kids' courts.

A select Committee headed by Northumber- land MP Alan Beith has called for a major reform in a children's court service.

The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service, launched two years ago, has come close to disaster, says the select committee's report.

Mr Beith, MP for Berwick, said: "CAFCASS is there to protect vulnerable children at a critical time in their lives. But its first two years have been close to disaster.

"It needs to dispel the impression that organisational priorities dominate its thinking. Instead, it must show that it really is putting children and young people first in all that it does.

"It needs to work closely with other organisations which have raised their concerns with us."

CAFCASS was set up in 2001 to integrate the Family Court Welfare Service, GALRO, and the Children's Division of the Official Solicitor.
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Jul 24, 2003
Words:142
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