MHCLG commits £165m to keep Troubled Families programme running

Written by John Johnston and Richard Johnstone on 6 January 2020 in News

Funding plan will maintain scheme to help families with complex needs, ministry announces

Photo: PA

Ministers have committed a further £165m fund to keep the Troubled Families programme running for another year.

Communities secretary Robert Jenrick said the funding would ensure the scheme, which was established in 2012 by former prime minister David Cameron before being expanded in 2015, would continue for at least another 12 months.

Around £920m has been spent on the scheme since it was set up in the wake of the 2011 London riots to provide help to families with complex issues, such as unemployment, truancy and domestic abuse.


The first round was intended to “turn around” the lives of 120,000 families, before the current iteration, set up in 2015, was intended to provide early intervention and more coordinated help from central and local government to around 400,000 families at risk of a number of social problems.

It was originally planned to run for five years to 2020, but the funding announced today confirms its extension into 2020-21, which was first indicated in the Spending Round last September.

Since the current programme was launched, nearly 300,000 vulnerable families have received help. Jenrick highlighted that, compared to families with similar characteristics who have not been on the programme, benefits include the proportion of children on the programme going into care has reduced by a third, and 10% fewer people claiming Jobseekers Allowance.

Announcing the funding, he said: "The programme will help more people in need get access to the early, practical and coordinated support to transform their lives for the better. This is the right thing to do for families and for society as a whole, and these reforms will reduce the demand and dependency on costly, reactive key public services.

“We want to build on the success of the programme in the coming year, delivering on our manifesto commitment to ensure we reach all those who could benefit from the programme - from the early years and throughout their lives."

The announcement comes after an evaluation last March found the scheme has improved outcomes in a host of areas, with a particular reduction in the number of children being taken into care.

According to the evaluation every £1 spent on the programme, it delivered £2.28 of benefits.

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John Johnston and Richard Johnstone
About the author

John Johnston is a reporter for PoliticsHome, where a version of this story first appeared. He tweets as @johnjohnstonmi

Richard Johnstone is CSW's deputy and online editor and tweets as @CSW_DepEd.

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