Magazine article Public Finance

Charity Urges Early Intervention Target

Magazine article Public Finance

Charity Urges Early Intervention Target

Article excerpt

The next government has been urged to set a fiscal target to increase the proportion of public money spent on early intervention programmes as part of its deficit reduction plan.

Leon Feinstein, director of evidence at the Early Intervention Foundation, said the charity - which was backed by government when it was formed in 2013 - wants the Treasury's help to improve its estimate of the costs of late intervention.

A report by the foundation in February judged these costs to be £l7bn a year, with councils picking up £6.5bn, followed by welfare spending of £3.7bn and £3bn in the NHS.

Feinstein said the figures had 'helped people get around the table to think about how to shift that cost into early intervention' and that it is now vital that the next government boosts these initiatives.

Early intervention programmes are focused on taking action as soon as possible to help children, young people and families who are suffering from neglect and deprivation to avoid picking up the costs later in life. They are mainly aimed at people aged up to 18, with high-profile examples including Sure Start children's centres and primary schools that improve children's social and emotional skills. …

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