Publication - Advice and guidance

Children's Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment guidance

Published: 19 Nov 2021

Guidance on how to complete a Children's Rights and Wellbeing Screening Sheet and Impact Assessment (CRWIA). Includes links to useful resources for gathering evidence, involving children and young people in the development of your policy/measure and ensuring decisions are necessary and proportionate.

Children's Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment guidance
Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA) Guidance

Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA) Guidance

Part 1 of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 requires all Scottish Ministers to:

  • Give better or further effect to the requirements of the UNCRC;
  • Take account of the relevant views of children of which they are aware;
  • Promote public awareness and understanding of the rights of children;
  • Report every three years to the Scottish Parliament on what they have done to fulfil these duties.

Section 2 of the 2014 Act requires local authorities, health boards and other public bodies to report every three years on the steps they have taken to secure better or further effect of the requirements of the UNCRC.

Getting It Right For Every Child (GIRFEC) is Scotland's approach to improving the wellbeing of children and young people, with 'wellbeing' defined by eight indicators listed in s.96(2) of the 2014 Act. These indicators – Safe, Healthy, Achieving, Nurtured, Active, Respected, Responsible, Included – were developed from the UNCRC.

Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA) of legislation and policy in Scotland is a tool that can help to inform and meet these duties.

This non-statutory guidance was originally produced for Scottish Government officials but is also suitable for use by public authorities and third sector organisations. It sets out the steps that officials can take in order to provide Ministers, stakeholders and the public with evidence that proper consideration has been given to the impact that a policy/measure will have on children and young people up to the age of 18. The Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA) is the approach that officials use.

CRWIAs follow normal impact assessment practice, and use two frameworks in the assessment:

  • The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) which the Scottish Government, along with other duty-bearers, is required to respect, protect and fulfil; is used for assessing impact.
  • The child wellbeing indicators developed as part of the GIRFEC approach to children's services provision in Scotland are used to measure impact.

CRWIAs will help officials satisfy Ministerial duties in Part 1 of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014, including the duty to report progress on the implementation of the UNCRC to the Scottish Parliament every three years.

Before you begin your CRWIA, you may find the Children's Rights and the UNCRC in Scotland: An Introduction' helpful. This guidance intends to enable those delivering public services to consider the UNCRC in the delivery of their services and to take actions now to make children's rights real.

Reviewing published CRWIA's on similar policy's/measures can be helpful before starting yours. There is a Scottish Government webpage that has links to all published CRWIA's to date. Child rights and wellbeing impact assessments: list - (