However difficult it may have been to organise, the forthcoming Leaders’ Debate presents a welcome opportunity for the voting public to hear how the different political parties would act in government over the next five years, if given the power to do so.
Among the millions of children and young people who are affected by government policies every day, one group in particular rely more directly on government than any other – the 68,000 children in care.* For these children and young people, too-often invisible in political debates and without a vote of their own, the state has a special responsibility.
Anyone seeking government office, not least hoping to be Prime Minister, takes on a ‘corporate’ responsibility for all children in care. We believe it is our duty as voters to hold our politicians to democratic account for their role as corporate parents to these children. If we don’t, who will?
This General Election should be the first in which the nation publicly asks its politicians how they will live up to their responsibility to be good parents for our most vulnerable children.
We call for the Leaders’ Debate on 2nd April (and other leadership interviews) to ask one simple question to all parties: ‘What will you do for children in care?’
Kathy Evans (CEO, Children England)
David Holmes CBE (CEO, Family Action)