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Number of adoptions has increased in Bradford
8:00am Friday 23rd August 2013 in Bradford
Adoptions in Bradford are on the rise with 58 youngsters found a permanent new home in 2012/13, it has been revealed.
That is a rise across the district from 34 in 2010/11 and 56 in 2011/12.
Special Guardianship Orders, where children are living permanently in their family network, have also increased in Bradford, from 24 in 2010/11 to 30 in 2011/12 and up to 55 in 2012/13.
There are currently 83 children waiting for an adoptive family, Bradford Council revealed.
The figures were released as the Office for National Statistics said last year saw the largest annual increase in adoptions in 15 years, with 5,206 in England and Wales. The national figures represent a 9.8 per cent increase on 2011 when there were 4,740 adoptions, it said.
The Office for National Statistics suggested the rise could be down to a recent drive to improve the adoptions process in England and in Wales.
In May last year, the Government launched new scorecards for local authorities that revealed how long they took to find adoptive parents for children in care.
More recently it announced there will be a “fast-track” system for previously-approved foster carers and adopters, along with legal obligations on adoption agencies to refer would-be adopters to the Adoption Register within three months of approval.
There are currently around 4,000 children in care who are waiting to be adopted, and recent figures show that youngsters wait nearly 21 months on average before finding a new family.
In some areas, children are forced to wait almost three years before moving in to a permanent new home.
Julie Jenkins, Bradford Council’s assistant director (children’s specialist services), said: “The local picture in Bradford is the same as the national one, which is great news for children who have been found a permanent family.
“But there are still numbers of children waiting for the right adoptive family and we would like anyone interested in adoption to contact Bradford Council on (01274) 437343.”
The Council currently has around 890 “looked after children” in its care, including more than 600 being fostered.
The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics are made up of adoptions which took place following court orders in England and Wales in 2012 and apply to adoptions by relatives and step-parents as well as adoptions from care.
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