The Children Act 1989 introduced the role of Independent Visitors (IVs) for looked after children; their task is 'visiting, advising and befriending the child' (section 7(2)(a)). However, research has found that IVs are not being made available for all children in care who qualify for this support (Knight, 1998;Oakley and Masson, 2000). Knight (1998) estimated that there were fewer than 40 schemes running for around 120 English local authorities, a situation which is at the very least questionable given the e…
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