Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, is calling on kinship carers to take part in a pioneering new survey.
Kinship care is where children whose parents are unable to look after them are cared for by other relatives. Gwynne is himself a kinship carer for his grandson Lyle, and also sits as the Chair of the All-party parliamentary group (APPG) on Kinship Care.
The APPG is currently holding an inquiry into legal aid access for Kinship Carers, and aims to use survey responses to better understand the experiences of kinship carers, and where policy interventions are most necessary. At the moment, kinship carers are unable to access free, independent legal advice and representation when considering taking on the care of a child who cannot safely remain with their parents.
Last week, Gwynne spoke passionately about his own experiences, and has long called for better support and recognition for kinship carers.
Commenting on the survey, Andrew Gwynne said:
“Kinship carers step in to avoid a child from remaining in, or entering into, the care system. They provide a safe and loving home for a child within their family network.
However, as I understand first hand, they are often having to navigate a complex legal system without proper support. Many end up in substantial debt as a result and suffer extreme financial and mental stress.
This inquiry aims to find out more about what other Kinship carers are going through, and give policy makers the tools to make better decisions that work for families up and down the country.
I’d encourage any Kinship carers to share their stories.”
Those wishing to take part in the survey can do so by visiting: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/3FJ5SBW