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Problem families identified under special scheme in Brighton and Hove
Nearly 1,000 problem families have been identified in Brighton and Hove since the launch of a Government scheme nearly two years ago.
The Troubled Families programme was launched as part of a scheme to get children off the streets and to help families get back into work.
According to a Freedom of Information request, the city council has identified 963 “troubled families” in Brighton and Hove and has so far “turned around” 317 of these.
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Troubled families are defined as those who are involved in youth crime or antisocial behaviour, have children who regularly play truant or are excluded from school, have an adult on out-of-work benefits or cost the public sector large sums in responding to their problems.
A family is considered “turned around” if children are back in school, youth crime or antisocial behaviour has been cut, adults get back into work or reducing the costs to the taxpayer of tackling their problems.
However, in Brighton and Hove, of the 317 families which have been “turned around” 276 still have at least one adult remaining on out-of-work benefits.
The council said it did not provide information on how many “turned around” families had subsequently been involved in at least one crime and/or incidence of antisocial behaviour or had a family member who had subsequently skipped school or been excluded.
A Brighton and Hove City Council spokesman said: “Our target with the Stronger Families Stronger Communities programme is to ‘turn around’ 675 families by March 2015.
“Our overall target has been agreed with the Government and we are on course to achieve it. Our target for March 2014 was 315 families. We are ahead of this with 317 families.
“The definition of ‘turned around’ includes success on two different levels – success with school attendance, exclusion, youth offending and anti social behaviour as applicable or employment outcome.
“We and the Government understand that the families we are working with have complex issues, and that the desired outcomes will not be achieved for all families.
According to figures released by the Department for Communities and Local Government, 278 families have been “turned around” in East Sussex and 436 in West Sussex.
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