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Reducing parental conflict – information for professionals

There is strong evidence that conflict between parents, whether together or separated, can have a significant negative impact on children’s mental health and long-term life-chances. Not all conflict is damaging, but where this is frequent, intense and poorly resolved it can harm children’s outcomes.

The government’s Improving Lives strategy introduced a new focus on tackling the impact of parental conflict on children, with the aim that this will become mainstream, alongside support for parenting. As part of this work, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is leading a national Reducing Parental Conflict Programme to embed evidence-based support to tackle parental conflict in local areas.

Tower Hamlets has been awarded a small grant to deliver free training to all partners and raise awareness of the parental conflict agenda across the borough.

The overarching aim of the programme is to support local areas to make progress towards an integrated system-wide response to the reducing parental conflict evidence base by end of March 2021, to ultimately improve child outcomes and reduce the need for costly specialist services in the future. 

The programme intends to achieve this by:

  • Continuing to build the parental conflict evidence base through ongoing evaluation as part of a test and learn approach
  • Supporting and enabling local authorities and their partners to understand the evidence base and to agree and adopt a system-wide approach to developing appropriate local service provision. 

A Reducing Parental Conflict conference was held on 29 October 2019, in partnership with the Department of Work and Pensions to raise awareness with professionals about the reducing parental conflict agenda.

Delegates from across the LBTH Partnership attended, including health, police, schools, housing and voluntary sector.

Speakers presented information about the evidence base and the impact of parental conflict on children and young people and attendees were given the opportunity to contribute towards the development of a Tower Hamlets Reducing Parental Conflict Pledge.

The Early Help Training Programme provides information about all training and opportunities available for professionals to develop skills and knowledge in a number of areas including Reducing Parental Conflict and working with families.

Information about parental conflict will be presented at the Parent’s Matter conference (March 2020). A leaflet for parents [9] with information about causes and impact of conflict is available for professionals to download/share, as well as the RPC information for parents webpage signposting parents to services for support.

Research and evidence

Tools

Further information

If you would like any further information, please visit the Early Intervention Foundation and the Tavistock Relationships policy and research website.

If you would like to find out how you can get involved or for further information about RPC, contact Kobita.Begum@towerhamlets.gov.uk or Tanya.Rajfeld@towerhamlets.gov.uk.