“Why should someone profit from me not living with my family?”

[Summary: More thoughts from the CROA conference on the details of a changing state]

“Why should someone profit from me not living with my family?”

That was the powerful question put by a young woman from member of Manchester’s Care to Change Council to Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children and Families┬áTim Loughton at the CROA Conference last week, questioning the role of private providers building and running children’s homes.

As she explains in this video after the panel discussion where the question was put (approx 1m 30s in), Tim Loughton suggested the government was not concerned with who runs children’s homes, as long as the quality of care is good. However, the discussion did get me thinking about how, regardless of the quality of the service, some services, such as providing a caring environment for someone to grow up in when they can’t live with their family, could be (or feel to be) intrinsically different when provided through the private sector rather than the public sector.

How does moving into the market do more than just change the incentive structures for efficiency around specific public services?