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Background to Every Child Matters

In 2003 the Government published a Green Paper called Every Child Matters. This was published alongside the formal response to the report into the death of Victoria Climbié, the young girl who was horrifically abused and tortured, and eventually killed by her great aunt and the man with whom they lived.

The Green Paper built on existing plans to strengthen preventative services by focusing on four key themes:

The Green Paper prompted an unprecedented debate about services for children, young people and families. There was a wide consultation with people working in children's services, and with parents, children and young people.

Following the consultation, the Government published Every child matters: The next steps, and passed the Children Act 2004, providing the legislative spine for developing more effective and accessible services focused around the needs of children, young people and families.

Every child matters: Change for children was published in November 2004 and this website was launched soon afterwards.

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Associated documents

PDF Document Every Child Matters green paper (819.7Kb)
This Government has invested heavily in policies designed to give all children the chance to succeed. There have already been significant improvements in educational achievement, and reductions in teenage pregnancy, re-offending and children living in low income households. Today's children and young people experience wider opportunities and benefit from rising prosperity, better health and education than those in previous generations.

PDF Document Every Child Matters: Change for Children (742.0Kb)
Every Child Matters: Change for Children sets out the national framework for local change programmes to build services around the needs of children and young people so that we maximise opportunity and minimise risk. The services that reach every child and young person have a crucial role to play in shifting the focus from dealing with the consequences of difficulties in children?s lives to preventing things from going wrong in the first place. The transformation that we need can only be delivered through local leaders working together in strong partnership with local communities on a programme of change. That is why this document sets out what action needs to be taken locally and how Government will work with and support Local Authorities and their partners.


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Last updated on 29/04/2009