Fewer children taken into care by youth welfare offices

Children in front of an unrefurbished house in Berlin
Children in front of an unrefurbished house in Berlin
The youth welfare offices in Germany carried out around 2019 so-called taking into care in 49.500.

That was just under 3.100 cases and thus six percent fewer than in the previous year, announced the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) on Thursday. The background to this development is a renewed decline in protective measures after unaccompanied entry from abroad: Their number fell by 29 percent compared to the previous year to a good 8.600. Meanwhile, the number of protective measures for other reasons rose by one percent to around 40.900 cases.

In the long term, another trend is continuing: In the last ten years, the number of people being taken into care has increased by 30 percent for other reasons with slight fluctuations ?? of around 31.500 cases in 2009. Around every third affected child was younger than twelve years, and around every tenth was even younger than three years. Boys were taken into custody somewhat more often than girls (53 percent); only in the age group from twelve to 16 years was the gender ratio reversed. In about every fifth case (19 percent), the children and adolescents concerned sought help from the youth welfare office themselves, the statisticians continued. Most often, however, the measure was suggested by social services and the youth welfare office (55 percent), and in more than every tenth case a notice came from the police or regulatory authorities (twelve percent). Most minors were housed with their parents (25 percent), with a single parent (24 percent) or with a parent in a new partnership (14 percent) before they were taken into care. However, previous home placement was not uncommon (13 percent). In 23 percent of all cases, the children or adolescents were at home before taking care of them? including foster family and home ?? uprooted. Most often, children were taken into care in 2019 because one or both parents were overwhelmed (38 percent). Unaccompanied immigration from abroad followed by some distance in second place (17 percent). Signs of neglect were the third most common (14 percent) and relationship problems the fourth most common cause of taking into care (XNUMX percent). In fifth place were indications of physical abuse (twelve percent).

Multiple answers were possible.