Local authorities are unwittingly becoming “recruiting sergeants” for drugs gangs, by sending thousands of children in care to live outside their home area, according to a report by the All Party Parliamentary Group for runaway and missing children.


The report shows a 77% rise in the number of children in England being placed in care homes outside their home council area – from 2,250 children in 2012 to 3,990 in 2018. Two-thirds (64%) of children in children’s homes and 41% of all looked after children in England live out of area.


According to the report, children are often placed out of area, “not because it is in their best interests, but because there are no local placements available”


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