Call for law change to support kinship carers

UK Government urged to reconsider position on parental leave rights.

Minister for Keeping the Promise Natalie Don has written to the UK Government calling for statutory parental leave rights to be extended to kinship carers.

Kinship carers are people caring for a child on behalf of a friend or relative, full time. The latest statistics show there are currently 4,249 formally looked after children in kinship care across Scotland. It is estimated there are around a further 3,000 non-looked after children in kinship care who are supported by local authorities.

As it stands, UK Government guidance means these carers are reliant on the “good will” of their employers to secure paid time off to look after the children in their care.

Family leave for Kinship carers: letter to UK Government - (


Children's Social Work Statistics Scotland: 2021 to 2022 - (

Children with ‘looked after’ status refers to those who have been through the children’s hearing system and have a Compulsory Supervision Order or are accommodated under the Children (Scotland) Act 1995. ‘Non-looked after’ children refers to those in informal kinship care, where the carer has obtained a Kinship Care Order.


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