Where a child is in care or accommodated by a local authority he or she may put themselves or others at risk by absconding. Where their placement becomes unworkable the local authority may apply for a secure accommodation order under s.25 CA 1989. These applications are often complex because the child concerned may not consent to what amounts to a deprivation of liberty and the court will need to consider carefully their right to liberty under Article 5 ECHR.
In recent times there has been a chronic shortage of approved secure placements in England, leading to children being placed more frequently in Scotland. The Children Act 1989 has been amended to provide a statutory route for such placements.
Our Public Law team has great experience in bringing and defending applications for secure accommodation, working on behalf of Local Authorities, parents, Guardians and those children, usually adolescents, in respect of whom orders are sought.