The Parent-Infant Foundation’s response to the Budget and Spending Review

27 October 2021

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Chancellor Rishi Sunak referred to the importance of a child’s first 1001 days during today’s Budget and Spending Review, as he confirmed £500 million worth of spending on services for children and families. This new money will fund family hubs, the supporting families programme, and mental health services.

Unfortunately, the documentation published by the Treasury so far has not provided detail of the specific amount allocated to mental health service, nor the type of benefits that would be provided.

Ahead of the Autumn Budget, the Parent-Infant Foundation made a representation to the Spending Review requesting £88 million for the development of a specialist parent-infant workforce and a national development programme to roll out specialised parent-infant relationship teams, who provide highly skilled infant mental health provision. A copy of the representation can be found here.

Keith Reed, Chief Executive of the Parent-Infant Foundation, said:  

“It is great to see a recognition of the importance of pregnancy and the earliest years of life in the Budget and Spending Review, and new money associated with the Start for Life vision.”

“There is mention of funding for mental health services as part of the Start for Life package. However, it is not clear from today’s announcements how much of the funding is specifically for mental health services, and what type of services will benefit. It is vitally important that there is investment in specialised parent-infant relationship teams as part of this package of support. These teams have the specialist skills required to work with families experiencing the most complex and serious challenges to their early relationships, and where babies’ mental health is most at risk.”

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