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Children's services experts appear before Lords

The Lords Select Committee on Adoption Legislation will be hearing from the Office of the Children's Commissioner on Tuesday 30 October, as part of its current inquiry into the adoption process.

At 10.15am, the Committee will hear from:

  • Sue Berelowitz, Deputy Children's Commissioner; and
  • Jenny Clifton, Principal Policy Advisor (Safeguarding), Office of the Children's Commissioner.

Following on, at 11am, the Committee will be hearing from the following witnesses from the Association of the Directors of Children's Services:

  • Debbie Jones, President, DCS Lambeth;
  • Matt Dunkley, former President, DCS East Sussex; and
  • Andrew Webb, Vice President, DCS Stockport.

The witnesses are likely to face questions from the Committee on issues including:

  • how the rights of the child are balanced against the rights of birth parents;
  • whether new laws are needed to promote adoption for BME children;
  • whether the current adoption system is too fragmented; and
  • whether adopters should benefit from changes to the tax and welfare system.

The evidence session will take place from 10.15am on Tuesday 30 October in Committee Room 3A of the House of Lords and will be webcast live at

The evidence session is also open to the public. Journalists wishing to attend should go to Parliament's Cromwell Green Entrance and should allow time for security screening.

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