Together respond to Stage 1 of Criminal Justice (Scotland) Bill
Date: 30th August 2013
Together submitted evidence in response to the Stage 1 Call for Evidence on the Criminal Justice (Scotland) Bill on 30th August 2013.
The submission to the Justice Committee drew from Together's 2012 State of Children's Rights report and consultation with children's organisations through its 2013 State of Children's Rights seminars. The 2012 report is based on research evidence, views and opinions gathered from over 100 professionals working with and for children who attended Together's 2012 seminars and seventy-nine children's organisations who completed an online survey.
Three specific issues are highlighted in Together's response: the best interests of the child, equal protection from assault for children and the age of criminal responsibility.
Together's four key messages were:
- The policy intention of section 42 to place a duty on constables to consider the best interests of the child when holding, arresting, interviewing or charging a child is welcome. Together seeks assurance that the use of the word 'wellbeing' in the Bill would achieve this policy intention.
- Together also urges the Justice Committee to ensure that the best interests of the child are also taken into consideration when holding, arresting, interviewing or charging a parent.
- Together calls on the Justice Committee to take heed of international calls to give children equal protection from assault and bring this forward through the Bill.
- The Bill provides an opportunity for the Scottish Government to fulfil its commitment to consider raising the age of criminal responsibility. Together urges the Justice Committee to take this forward through the Bill.
Download Together's written evidence to the Justice Committee here.