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Troubled Families evaluation agreed

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The government has commissioned a consortium of research bodies to keep track of its controversial troubled families programme.

The three-year £1.3m contract been awarded to Ecorys,  which is comprised of Ipsos MORI, the National Institute for Economic and Social Research, Clarissa White Research, Bryson Purdon Social Research, and the Thomas Coram Research Unit at the Institute of Education.

The research will examine interventions with families, how local authorities work with them and the savings made. It is jointly funded by the Department for Communities and Local Government and Local Government Association.

LGA chair Sir Merrick Cockell (Con) said: “The evaluation process will help councils continue to build on our excellent work to date in improving the lives of the families who need our support most.”

The troubled families programme aimsto turn round the lives of 120,000 families by 2015 where children are involved in crime or truancy, an adult is out of work and the public sector pays £75,000 a year or more in responding to their problems.

Controversy has dogged the programme over whether troubled families are as numerous as the Government thinks, and over how councils choose to work with them.

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