3 Key Findings
3.1 In total 282 written responses to the consultation were received. These written responses were independently analysed by Griesbach & Associates and the main findings are listed below. The Scottish Government is grateful for the time that individuals and organisations have taken to consider and provide views on the statutory guidance and draft Orders.
Scottish Ministers have considered the views put forward through the formal consultation and we have provided a response on their behalf. The substance of a number of respondents' comments were similar and those are addressed in this document.
3.2 The main findings were as follows:
- Respondents across all organisational sectors were generally supportive of the Act. They particularly welcomed the strong focus on the needs of the child, and on how the guidance acknowledged the need for the views of the child to be heard. Many respondents commented that it was helpful that the guidance emphasised the rights of children and their parents to have their views heard in the process of preparing the Child's Plan.
- 55% of the organisational respondents agreed that the guidance provided a clear interpretation of the Act to support implementation of the duties.
- There were calls for use of simpler language, better definitions of key concepts and illustrative practice related examples.
- One of the key themes running through the responses was the need to develop detailed practice materials to support organisations and practitioners to implement locally with national consistency. Individual organisations asked for examples on how GIRFEC would work for specific groups of children and young people.
- Some expressed a need for clarity on:
- provisions related to information sharing.
- the role of the Named Person and the relationship with the Lead Professional when there is a Child's Plan.
- the interface between the guidance and other extant legislation, systems and procedures - this included, but was not restricted to, the Data Protection Act, the European Convention on Human Rights and legislation, policy and procedures related to child protection.
- Complaints procedures and processes for dispute resolution needed to be included in the guidance.
- Other wider issues raised by third sector and non-statutory organisations included the need to take account of the role of the third sector in working with, and providing services to, children and young people, and the need for a greater emphasis on a rights and asset-based approach to providing support.
Email: Carole Campariol-Scott