A government programme is said to have already succeeded in transforming the lives of some “troubled families” in Central Beds.
The Troubled Families programme aims to help change the lives of England’s “toughest to tackle” households.
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has reported that at the end of June, 227 families in Central Beds were said to be troubled, of which 106 were being worked with at that time.
By the end of July, 30 of those families were reported to have been “turned around”.
Troubled families have a range of difficulties, and cause problems in the community, incurring high costs for the public sector.
Family problems can include involvement in youth crime or anti-social behaviour; having children who regularly truant; having an adult on out-of-work benefits.
The programme involves the Department for Communities and Local Government, and local authorities. The local authorities receive funds on a payment-by-results basis.
Nationally, the programme is said to have transformed the lives of 14,000 troubled families in 15 months.
Programme chief Louise Casey said councils “deserve credit” for the speedy results.
She said: “By dealing with all the family members and all of their problems in a tough and intensive way, we are finally getting to grips with problems which may have persisted for generations, giving hope to people who have often been failed in the past and relief for the communities that suffered the effects of their behaviour.”
Mr Pickles said: “Considering the often long-standing and deep-seated nature of these families’ problems, it is a huge achievement to have turned so many around in such a short space of time.
“And instead of several costly services working with the same family but failing to solve the underlying problems, this approach is both more effective for the family and cheaper, too.”