The All-Party Group (APPG) for Runaway and Missing Children and Adults and the APPG for Looked after Children and Care Leavers are launching an inquiry into the care and support provided for the thousands of children who run away or go missing from care every year.

The Inquiry is chaired by Ann Coffey MP, chair the APPG for Runaway and Missing Children and Adults and Earl of Listowel Vice-chair of the APPG for Looked after Children and Care Leavers. Panellists include Baroness Butler-Sloss, Alex Cunningham MP, Paul Goggins MP, Dan Rogerson MP, Peter Bone MP and Craig Whittaker MP.

The aims of the Inquiry are to develop a clear set of practical recommendations for policy-makers nationally and locally, to improve the help and support provided to children who run away or go missing from care.  

The broad theme of the Inquiry is the safeguarding of children in care who runaway or go missing, and it will look at:

  1. Looked-after children who are placed away from their home local authority
  2. Data collection and information sharing
  3. Police responses, including the current ACPO pilots to reduce bureaucracy relating to missing children
  4. Ofsted’s role to safeguard children in care who run away and how care placements are assessed
  5. Safeguarding trafficked children who go missing from care

The inquiry’s report will also share examples of best practice across the sector.

Written evidence

The APPGs are keen to receive written submissions from organisations working with children in care or children who runaway or go missing including voluntary organisations, local authorities children’s services, the police and fostering organisations. The APPGs are particularly keen to receive evidence from children and young people with experience of being in care and running away or going missing. The deadline for submitting written evidence is 23 April.

For more information on how to submit written evidence please read our guidelines.

Oral evidence

The Inquiry is holding oral evidence sessions in April 2012, to hear from a range of expert witnesses.

Please find the terms of reference to the Inquiry.

The Children’s Society is providing administrative and organisational support for the inquiry, for more information or if you have any questions please contact us.

About the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Runaway and Missing Children and Adults

The All-Party Parliamentary Group for Runaway and Missing Children and Adults works to raise awareness in Parliament of issues connected to children and adults who go missing or run away. The group meets throughout the year to explore, discuss and debate key issues connected to going missing or running away. Through inquiries, stakeholder presentations and engaging with children, young people and families, the group seeks to encourage the government to put in place the best possible policy and legislation for children and adults who go missing or run away.  The Children's Society and Missing People act as the joint secretariat for the APPG.

About the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Looked After Children and Care Leavers 

The group was set up in 1998 to ensure that the voices of young people with experience of public care are heard by government and that legislation addresses the particular needs of children and young people in and leaving care and to debate key policy and practice issues. The groups’ meetings are attended by members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords, representatives of voluntary organisations, childcare professionals and people who are currently in care or have past personal experience of the care system. The group seeks to be a powerful voice on behalf of children and young people in and leaving care.

The inquiry is supported by The Children’s Society and The Who Cares? Trust

Learn more and take action

cover of report on children who go missing from careTwo all party parliamentary groups (APPGs) have concluded their inquiry into the safeguarding of the thousands of children who run away or go missing from care every year. 

Their report from the joint inquiry into children who go missing from care outlines the findings and sets out practical recommendations for policy makers nationally and locally to improve the help and support provided to children who run away or go missing from care.

Parliamentary groups

This inquiry was led by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Runaway and Missing Children and Adults and the APPG for Looked after Children and Care Leavers.  The Children's Society supported the inquiry, they act as as the joint secretariat for the APPG with Missing People.

The APPGs collected evidence from ministers, national agencies such as the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Agency (CEOP) and Ofsted, the voluntary sector, police forces and local authorities.

The inquiry looked a wide range of issues, including:

  • children in care who are placed away from their home local authority
  • data collection and information sharing
  • police responses to children going missing
  • Ofsted’s role in safeguarding children in care who run away
  • the particular needs of trafficked children who go missing from care.

Who was on the inquiry

The inquiry was co-chaired by Ann Coffey MP, chair the APPG for Runaway and Missing Children and Adults, and Earl of Listowel, vice-chair of the APPG for Looked after Children and Care Leavers. Panellists included Alex Cunningham MP, Paul Goggins MP, Dan Rogerson MP and Craig Whittaker MP.

Learn more and take action