A system is to be adopted across Bedfordshire to help parents overcome serious drug or alcohol problems and keep their families together, where possible.
The Pan Bedfordshire Family Drug and Alcohol Court (FDAC) is a partnership between the county’s three local authorities.
Parental substance misuse puts children at risk of harm, according to a report to Central Bedfordshire Council’s children’s services overview and scrutiny committee.
“FDAC parents will be recognising they are in a bad place, but are willing to accept help to make the right choices and work towards safely looking after their children,” said the report.
Cllr James Valentine, Portfolio Holder for Children’s Services and Education said, “Bedford Borough welcomes partnership working providing support to families in crisis across the county.
“FDAC has a specialist team using a bespoke problem-solving approach working with families to support complex difficulties. Keeping families together in a happy, safe environment is our priority.”
Pan Bedfordshire FDAC team leader Beverley Sorensen told the committee: “Where there’s concern about parental substance misuse, traditionally there ends up being concern about significant harm and the impact on children, and that tends to end up in care proceedings.