New collaboration launched advocating for the right to sibling contact

Date: 29th March 2018
Category: Looked after children

A multi-agency partnership has been launched with the aim of improving and changing legislation, policy and practice around sibling contact.

The partnership, entitled 'Stand Up for Siblings', is a collaboration between a number of child welfare, children's rights and legal organisations and academics within Scotland.

Several Together members are involved in the partnership including:

Stand Up for Siblings will work to advocate for the rights of siblings in care, particularly in the following areas:

  • Changes in the law to put sibling contact on the same legal footing as birth parent contact;
  • Clear recording of children's sibling relationships in official records;
  • National quality indicators for direct contact between siblings;
  • A new national 'lifelong sibling relationships' assessment to replace the together/apart assessment
  • Transparent recording of children's views regarding contact in Children's Hearings and court cases;
  • A recruitment strategy to attract foster carers and adopters of sibling groups.
  • Universal access to life story work for children permanently separated from birth siblings.

Stand Up for Siblings have a number of resources on their website for both young people and professionals who require support around sibling contact.

They are also asking people to take a pledge and show how they support the aims of the partnership.