The Scottish government has produced new national standards which set out the support that children should expect from professionals when in secure care.
The support that should be provided to protect the rights of vulnerable children and young people before, during and after community or secure care is set out in The Secure Care Pathway and Standards Scotland for the first time.
Minister for Children and Young People Maree Todd said: “Going into care is distressing. Some children will not be able to show their feelings or to talk about what they are going through. That is why it is important that we have systems in place that make transitions less traumatic.
“The standards are fully co-produced by young people living in secure care and those with care experience and are written from the child’s perspective to ensure young people’s voices are heard, their rights are adhered to and they are treated with respect,” she added.
When implemented, the new standards will deliver a consistent, unified approach to caring for this vulnerable group in all local authority areas.
Secure care staff, local government, the Children and Young People’s Centre for Justice (CYCJ) as well as children and young people in care and with experience of care were involved in developing the standards.
Beth-Anne Logan, a care experienced young person, who has been involved in developing the standards said: “These standards are critically important as they show both professionals working in the sector and young people and their families what standard of care, they should expect to have should they enter secure care. They focus on the child's journey before, during and after secure care and how that should look and feel.
“Growing up in secure care, we wish we had a tool such as the standards to help us know our rights and what to expect off the people caring for us as secure can be a scary place sometimes - especially when you first move in there. These standards should be a beacon of hope and we should all be striving for the best care possible for Scotland's children.”
Minister for Children and Young People Maree Todd added: “The standards reinforce our commitment to the Scottish Government’s Getting it Right for Every Child policy, supporting the incorporation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the important asks of the Independent Care Review Promise published earlier this year. Above all our young people must feel safe, loved and cared for in a compassionate nurturing environment.”
Secure Care Pathway and Standards Scotland
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