The Children and Young People Bill Consultation

The proposed legislation will help parents structure their childcare to best suit their family’s needs as well as:

Increasing the amount of flexible, early learning and childcare to a minimum of 600 hours annually for three and four year olds and looked after two year olds

Embedding the Getting it right for every child (GIRFEC) approach in a single system of planning and delivery across children's services

A requirement for public bodies to design, plan and deliver policies and services that focus on improving children and young people's wellbeing

Improving Scotland's care system to ensure it offers effective, efficient support for children and families, centred on short and long term needs


The consultation on the Children and Young People Bill runs for 12 weeks with the deadline for submissions being September 25. It will provide an opportunity for stakeholders, professionals, parents and carers and children and young people to have their say on the future shape of children's services and the Scottish Government's approach to delivering change.

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/News/Rel...-12?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter
 

Sheila Struthers

Well-known member
I want to see the draft bill itself. This is from the consultation document:

118. There will be circumstances when the above arrangements would not work.
For certain groups of children and young people whose pattern of involvement with
educational services would make the above arrangements difficult to implement, the
Bill would set out alternative arrangements, to be supplemented in guidance issued
by Scottish Ministers.
• Children and young people in independent or grant-aided schools. For
children and young people attending independent or grant-aided schools, the
intention would be for these schools to designate staff to fulfil the
responsibility of the Named Person in the same way as in public schools.
Consequently, the duty to ensure a Named Person is in place would be
placed as follows: in independent schools, on the proprietors; and in grantmaintained schools, on the managers.
Children and young people who are educated at home. Where a child has
been in public school but has been withdrawn to be educated at home, the
duty would remain with the local authority to provide a Named Person – in
practice, through a link officer within the educational services. For those
children and young people who have never attended public school, the public
health nurse would make enquiries with the family as to their intentions
regarding the education of their children when the child becomes of school
entry age and advise the local authority should home education be the choice.
The local authority should record that decision. There would be no further
duties on the local authority, unless the child or family wanted help or another
agency reported concerns that needed a response from the family.

• Children and young people in gypsy/traveller communities. Due to their
family’s lifestyle, children and young people in traveller communities often do
not have regular access to health services or attend school regularly. The role
of the Named Person would be the responsibility of the health board until the
child would normally enter primary school and become the local authority
responsibility. Within the local authority in practice, this might fall to the
designated officers within Councils responsible for traveller education issues.
Within the health board, arrangements will need to be agreed at local level.
• Young people who leave school before 18. Those young people who leave
school at 16 would be entitled to have a Named Person provided by the local
authority. Local authorities would need to make arrangements for the
provision of a Named Person. Scottish Ministers may be empowered to issue
guidance to set out how this might work in practice.
I think I can predict what the answers to question 20 will be....
20. Do you think that the arrangements for certain groups of school-aged children
as set out in the consultation paper are the right ones? What, if any, other
arrangements should be made? Have any groups been missed out?
 
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I thing the 'Named Person' concept is the most dangerously left wing idea I have yet seen in British children's policy. Consider this from the consultation:

106. Getting it right for every child aims to have in place a network of support to promote wellbeing so that children and young people get the right help at the right time. This network will always include family and/or carers and it will include a role that we believe should be put into legislation: the Named Person. The Named Person is a practitioner who can monitor what children and young people need, within the context of their professional responsibilities, link with the relevant services that can help them and be a single point of contact for services that children and families can use if they wish. The Named Person is in a position to intervene early to prevent difficulties escalating.
If the State is going to give individuals, who are outside the family, the power to make decisions about universal services then there is no right to a private and family live under Article 8 of the Convention.

It's been amazing to watch the GIRFEC project grow unchecked to the point where it becomes dangerously intrusive and undermines the very fabric of family life. The 'Named Person' concept is as fundamental issue as the Identity Card scheme or the right to a fair trial or the right not to have your communications eavesdropped on without judicial authority or the right to free movement within your own country.

Of all the issues on this forum this is the one that will require, in the absence of party political opposition, a sustained campaign backed by very smart human rights lawyers.
 
Here's an example of what to expect:
59. There is a powerful argument for extending the Commissioner's power to undertake investigations on behalf of individual children and young people. The 2003 Act currently provides for the Commissioner to undertake investigations on behalf of groups of children and young people (section 7). Any investigation must focus on whether, by what means and to what extent a service provider has regard to the rights, interests and views of children and young people in making decisions or taking actions that affect them. However, many stakeholders believe that the Commissioner's powers should be extended to allow them to undertake investigations on behalf of individual children. This change would introduce an important mechanism for children to seek redress in response to perceived violations of their rights. Indeed, the nature of the Commissioner's work would make this avenue more child friendly than a judicial process.
Two comments. First, what confidence does the Children's Commissioner command? I would suggest that in the case of the current incumbent, the answer must be 'very little.'

Secondly and much more important, this is extremely dangerous, because it means that, if an excuse is found, or concocted, every family in the land is, or would be, at risk of direct intervention. Charitably, one must presume that such power would not be abused. Unfortunately, experience tends to deny this presumption.
 
As a PS to my post above, this is a huge and complex document and although I have read it, fairly swiftly, I am sure I have not yet taken in all that it implies.

What seems certain is that we are in grave danger of sleep-walking into what can only be described as the most sinister proposals for completely intrusive interference into family life.

The whole premiss on which this is based is not a new system of providing improved assistance for families needing it - dysfunctional families, families unable to cope, for example - but a super-Orwellian system for destroying family responsibilities in favour of of the state (or local authority).

The urgent question is how to deal with it.
 
What seems certain is that we are in grave danger of sleep-walking into what can only be described as the most sinister proposals for completely intrusive interference into family life.
I would argue that for the most part, it's past tense, not present tense. Everything is in place, society has been gently shepherded in without waking to the dangers, now they just need to shut the door. And lock it.
 
I would (again) argue that after a 100 or year sojourn into the anonymity of the 20th century city , we are returning to the lack of anonymity that characterised human life since people settled and started farming.

R
 

Sheila Struthers

Well-known member
I would (again) argue that after a 100 or year sojourn into the anonymity of the 20th century city , we are returning to the lack of anonymity that characterised human life since people settled and started farming.

R
Could you expand on that please?
 

Sheila Struthers

Well-known member
I thing the 'Named Person' concept is the most dangerously left wing idea I have yet seen in British children's policy. Consider this from the consultation:



If the State is going to give individuals, who are outside the family, the power to make decisions about universal services then there is no right to a private and family live under Article 8 of the Convention.

It's been amazing to watch the GIRFEC project grow unchecked to the point where it becomes dangerously intrusive and undermines the very fabric of family life. The 'Named Person' concept is as fundamental issue as the Identity Card scheme or the right to a fair trial or the right not to have your communications eavesdropped on without judicial authority or the right to free movement within your own country.

Of all the issues on this forum this is the one that will require, in the absence of party political opposition, a sustained campaign backed by very smart human rights lawyers.
Agreed the farce of party politics was never going to get us (whoever "us" is) anywhere.I don't think human rights lawyers are the way to go either :( . There may be a few "good" lawyers out there but their only use will be to draw people's attention to what is really going on.

http://www.girfecinlanarkshire.co.uk/2011/06/item-15-the-childyoung-person’s-pathway/

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s836apg
I would (again) argue that after a 100 or year sojourn into the anonymity of the 20th century city , we are returning to the lack of anonymity that characterised human life since people settled and started farming.

R
Could you expand on that please?
There wasn't much privacy in a medieval village, from your family, your neighbours, your feudal superior or The Church.
The last would expect you download your aberrant activities weekly in the confessional and presumed to a 360 degree cradle to grave view of your life.


Proto-GIRFEC :)

R
 
Agreed the farce of party politics was never going to get us (whoever "us" is) anywhere.I don't think human rights lawyers are the way to go either :( . There may be a few "good" lawyers out there but their only use will be to draw people's attention to what is really going on.
As we know, it's really difficult to get lots of people engaged with very complex social legislation like this. I'm harking back to the Children Act 2004 and the Every Child Matters Agenda. Those in the 'know' understood that lowering the threshold for state intervention was going to have damaging consequences but were unable to elevate the concerns to a widespread public debate. When the Children Act 2004 went through Parliament the New Labour Government had a guaranteed majority in all things so political opposition was just not possible. However, I am given to understand that, when the legislation hit the drafters in Whitehall there were some furious internal arguments about the powers contained in the clauses.

There are people who can articulate why, for example, putting 'wellbeing' on a statutory basis might not only be a bad idea in practice but would be an Article 8 breach. My take is that these people most likely people reside in the various rights organisations - if someone can first persuade them that the issues are there.

Would, say, the Scottish Human Rights Law Group http://www.shrlg.org.uk/papers/ have a position on this?

Knocking back legislation like this can be done but I reckon it needs a persistent specialist effort by a determined few. Action on Rights for Children (ARCH): https://archrights.wordpress.com/were very influential in getting Contact Point shut down.

It's really difficult because you are only ever going to get a very few politicians engaged in the detail of this - and, in an era of hyper sensitivity about children's issues, opposing anything perceived as beneficial to children's welfare is really tricky. I know that if I phone my relatives in Scotland and say "hey , have a look at this" they probably won't get round to to it. Unless, that is, you can come up with a very obvious and direct threat arising from the legislation.

So, my point is that this being a public consultation it needs some really good detailed responses which will make the drafters sit up. How you achieve that . . .

I know some folk will argue that this is probably a 'done deal and a fake consultation - but what else do you do?

Just my thoughts!
 

Elaine Kirk

Super Moderator
Beware the stately freedom eaters,
Lawn grass kept at max 4 centimeters
The breeding centre (formerly known as home)
Will have a special wee household gnome
Clipboard, tickbox, eyes so beady
they will decide if your offsprings needy

They've done their research have State and Charity
They see the future with oh such clarity
So when the gnome says " jump" you'll jump
or they will claim your 6 month bump

You don't know best you cannot do
They know you have'nt got a clue
So they'll script some guidance , nice and clear
To which all gnomes will gleefully adhere....
And expand

have your offspring in school by nine
ensure they are abed by dusk
Feed them a diet of Tesco's finest
No wellies in the summer months
No treats within their packed school lunch

And one last word of caution here
Don't trim the grass to 2.54
thinking you can let it grow free
Or gnome will bring you to your knees
Because you give them an inch and they take...
 
It struck me that the Medieval equivalent of "The Named Person" was "The Godparent",

Here is a warning in Langland's "Piers Plowman",

"Godfathers and godmothers that see their children
At misease (trouble) and at mischief, and may them amend,
Shall have penance in purgatory unless they them help,
For more belongs to the little bairn, ere he the law know,
Than naming of a name, and he never the wiser"

A sanction a bit tougher than professional disqualification!

R
 

Sheila Struthers

Well-known member
As we know, it's really difficult to get lots of people engaged with very complex social legislation like this. I'm harking back to the Children Act 2004 and the Every Child Matters Agenda. Those in the 'know' understood that lowering the threshold for state intervention was going to have damaging consequences but were unable to elevate the concerns to a widespread public debate. When the Children Act 2004 went through Parliament the New Labour Government had a guaranteed majority in all things so political opposition was just not possible. However, I am given to understand that, when the legislation hit the drafters in Whitehall there were some furious internal arguments about the powers contained in the clauses.

There are people who can articulate why, for example, putting 'wellbeing' on a statutory basis might not only be a bad idea in practice but would be an Article 8 breach. My take is that these people most likely people reside in the various rights organisations - if someone can first persuade them that the issues are there.

Would, say, the Scottish Human Rights Law Group http://www.shrlg.org.uk/papers/ have a position on this?

Knocking back legislation like this can be done but I reckon it needs a persistent specialist effort by a determined few. Action on Rights for Children (ARCH): https://archrights.wordpress.com/were very influential in getting Contact Point shut down.

It's really difficult because you are only ever going to get a very few politicians engaged in the detail of this - and, in an era of hyper sensitivity about children's issues, opposing anything perceived as beneficial to children's welfare is really tricky. I know that if I phone my relatives in Scotland and say "hey , have a look at this" they probably won't get round to to it. Unless, that is, you can come up with a very obvious and direct threat arising from the legislation.

So, my point is that this being a public consultation it needs some really good detailed responses which will make the drafters sit up. How you achieve that . . .

I know some folk will argue that this is probably a 'done deal and a fake consultation - but what else do you do?

Just my thoughts!
Thanks Mayfly.

The "paedophiles' address book" is a pretty obvious and direct threat.

I have very little faith in existing organisations - attending this event didn't help...

Speakers:

Dr Geraint Bevan (NO2ID Scotland Co-ordinator)
Patrick Harvie MSP (Co-convenor of the Scottish Green Party and MSP for Glasgow)
Dr Richard Jones (Lecturer in Criminology at the University of Edinburgh)
Dr Ken Macdonald (Assistant Information Commissioner for Scotland)
Prof Mike Nellis (Professor of Community and Criminal Justice at Strathclyde University and the Institute for Advanced Studies)
John Scott (Criminal defence lawyer and former chairman of the Scottish Human Rights Centre)
Jo Swinson MP (Liberal Democrat MP for East Dunbartonshire)
Dr William Webster (Lecturer in Public Management at the University of Stirling Management School)
Two simple examples:

Ken Macdonald has been heavily involved with the development of eCare including recommending it for an award in 2007.

Here is a recent quote from John Scott:

Toddlers face tests to find delinquents of the future

Leading human rights lawyer John Scott said: "If it is used for intervention and resources are found, that is laudable.

"But if you identify children with problems and do nothing about it, they then are branded from the age of two. It must not be used simply to identify future criminals.

"Everyone seems to agree that you can identify at a very early age who is likely to go off the rails or have serious addiction issues, but I don't know anywhere else where they have done that and found the resources to tackle the problem."
 
I have very little faith in existing organisations
Understood. But . . . did you hear Prof Neil Ferguson give his fourth Reith lecture in Edinburgh?

Civil and Uncivil Societies
Niall Ferguson asks what constitutes a vibrant and independent civil society.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01jms03

This was a lecture given by a distinguisher Scot, to a Scottish audience in Edinburgh. Significantly he was very critical of the Scottish education system. This was NOT well received! However . . . his arguments were difficult for his detractors to refute.

Neil Ferguson is obviously a man with status (and maybe even clout) in Scotland. Moreover, he attached a sacred cow. But he is probably unaware of the GIRFEC project. How about writing direct to him with concerns about this consultation?

If you could get a respected Scottish historian to explain why the GIRFEC project will ultimately damage Scotland then perhaps someone in Government might sit up and listen.
 
Ok, Mayfly,are you writing to him?

I must confess to being a bit jaundiced about the bold Niall.
A few months ago I read his , "Virtual History: Alternatives and Counterfactuals" , and a bigger bag of self serving ,pompous, obscurantist shite I have not come across in a long time.

R
 
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