Provision of accommodation for children, Article, Parental Rights, Help Social Services Child Protection
Provision of accommodation for children: general
21.—(1) Every authority shall provide accommodation for any child in need within its area who appears to the authority to require accommodation as a result of—
(a) there being no person who has parental responsibility for him;
(b) his being lost or having been abandoned; or
(c) the person who has been caring for him being prevented (whether or not permanently, and for whatever reason) from providing him with suitable accommodation or care.
(2) Where an authority provides accommodation under paragraph (1) for a child who is ordinarily resident in the area of another authority, that other authority may take over the provision of accommodation for the child within—
(a) three months of being notified in writing that the child is being provided with accommodation; or
(b) such other longer period as may be prescribed.
(3) Every authority shall provide accommodation for any child in need within its area who has reached the age of 16 and whose welfare the authority considers is likely to be seriously prejudiced if it does not provide him with accommodation.
(4) An authority may provide accommodation for any child within the authority's area (even though a person who has parental responsibility for him is able to provide him with accommodation) if the authority considers that to do so would safeguard or promote the child's welfare.
(5) An authority may provide accommodation for any person who has reached the age of 16 but is under 21 in any home provided under Part VII which takes children who have reached the age of 16 if the authority considers that to do so would safeguard or promote his welfare.
(6) Before providing accommodation under this Article, an authority shall, so far as is reasonably practicable and consistent with the child's welfare—
(a) ascertain the child's wishes regarding the provision of accommodation; and
(b) give due consideration (having regard to his age and understanding) to such wishes of the child as the authority has been able to ascertain.
Powers of person with parental responsibility
22.—(1) An authority may not provide accommodation under Article 21 for any child if any person who—
(a) has parental responsibility for him; and
(b) is willing and able to—
(i) provide accommodation for him; or
(ii) arrange for accommodation to be provided for him,
(2) Any person who has parental responsibility for a child may at any time remove the child from accommodation provided by or on behalf of the authority under Article 21.
(3) Paragraphs (1) and (2) do not apply while any person—
(a) in whose favour a residence order is in force with respect to the child; or
(b) who has care of the child by virtue of an order made in the exercise of the High Court's inherent jurisdiction with respect to children,
agrees to the child being looked after in accommodation provided by or on behalf of the authority.
(4) Where there is more than one such person as is mentioned in paragraph (3), all of them must agree.
(5) Paragraphs (1) and (2) do not apply where a child who has reached the age of 16 agrees to being provided with accommodation under Article 21.
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