Tag Archives: children’s rights

WATCH: Willie Rennie questions Nicola Sturgeon about restraint of vulnerable and disabled children

In December, Scotland’s Children’s Commissioner published a shocking report which stated that local authorities risked breaking the law and breaching vulnerable and disabled children’s human rights with the way they used restraint and seclusion.

Out of the 18 local authorities which record such incidents, almost 400 children were subjected to these procedures a total of 2764 times. And 14 local authorities gave no information at all so the overall figure may be higher.

The report made 22 recommendations to which the Scottish Government was to respond to by the end of January.

There was one particularly disturbing account of the seclusion of a child with the mental age of 3:

One time I was called and he was being kept in the cloakroom with the door shut on his own incredibly distressed and not allowed out until I arrived. He was 5 years old with the mental age of a three year old… X very traumatised re the holds and not sleeping well and screaming in his sleep, very reluctant to go into school…

The staff had even put him in a room on his own in a totally unregulated state and held the door handle from the other side and wouldn’t let him out. X. was Distraught.

Willie Rennie asked Nicola Sturgeon at First Minister’s Questions what the Government was going to say.

Watch the exchange here. The text is below:

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Lack of Services for Disabled Children – Parliamentary Campaign Launch

Yesterday, the Disabled Children’s Partnership campaign was launched in parliament. Lib Dem Leader Vince Cable came along to show his support, as well as many other MPs, peers, charities and family representatives. I was also pleased that former Care Minister Norman Lamb MP, was also able to come meet families. 

The Disabled Children’s Partnership (DCP) is an exciting new coalition of over 50 disability and children’s charities. I sit on their Public Policy Group as a member of the Fragile X

Posted in News and Parliament | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments

Opinion: We need to enshrine children’s rights in law

Our pre-manifesto calls for lowering the voting age to 16, increasing provision for children’s mental health, ring-fencing education budgets from pre-school through to college and committing to end child poverty.  What I’d also like to see is a vision to incorporate the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child into U.K. law.

Why?  We need to empower and enable children.  We need to enshrine their rights in our law.   The Human Rights Act does not mention child-specific rights as set out in the UNCRC: the right to education, the right to protection from violence and abuse, the right to play (wouldn’t it be nice if we all had the right to play?).

I remember being a 9-year old, expressing my point of view and not being taken seriously.  I was furious.  I felt I had a better answer than the adult engaging with me, but I was not listened to because I was a child.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 17 Comments
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