Government launches Troubled Families data sharing project

The government is creating a database – allowing official researchers to access data on UK families – to facilitate a new project by the Office of National Statistics which assesses the Troubled Families programme.

The information collated will include names, dates of birth and postcodes, along with school attendance and attainment information, details of criminal offences, plus welfare benefits dates and employment status. The information will be passed to Whitehall departments, which will then link it with their own data. Personal identifiers will then be removed, before the data is transferred securely to the ONS, the government said.

In a privacy notice, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) added: “DCLG will do this by combining personal data provided by local authorities about families with multiple problems with information routinely collected by government departments.This information will allow DCLG to find out if the programme has improved outcomes for families, such as reducing offending and truancy, improving children’s safety and families’ health, as well as getting people into work.”

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