Movement restriction conditions in the children's hearing system: guidance

Information for social workers who have a statutory responsibility to present information to children’s panel members.


The purpose of this guidance document is to provide an overview of the key factors that ought to be taken into account when consideration is being given to the use of a Movement Restriction Condition ( MRC) in the Children's Hearing System ( CHS). The document is intended primarily for Lead Professionals (generally social workers) who have a statutory responsibility to present information to Children's Panel Members in respect of young people involved in offending behaviour of a serious nature or behaviours which places themselves and/or others at risk of serious harm [1] . The guidance should also be of value to other professionals and practitioners (including those in the voluntary sector) working with troubled and troubling young people, even where they do not hold specific statutory responsibilities. While the focus of the guidance is upon the mechanics and practicalities of MRCs it is imperative that implementation authorities do not lose sight of the importance of providing vulnerable young people and their families with a broad and varied range of support and assistance irrespective of whether concerns are predominantly welfare-oriented, predominantly related to offending behaviour or, as is commonly the case, concerns stem from an interplay of the two.

This guidance is advisory in nature and practitioners should be cognisant of complementary local policies and procedures. It is not exhaustive but does aim to capture the principal features of the process before, during and after the point at which substantive decisions are made in relation to MRCs. With the advent of the Children's Hearings (Scotland) Act 2011 (henceforth 'the Act'), there is an evident need for contemporary guidance in this particular policy and practice area. Considerable change has occurred since it first became possible for young people to be made subject to electronic monitoring ( EM) through the CHS in Scotland. Guidance needs to reflect in its focus and tone this new legal environment in which practitioners are operating. At the current juncture, MRCs rely on Radio Frequency ( RF) technology used by the Monitoring Service Provider and Global Position System ( GPS) technology is not utilised.


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