Brexit: Letter to the Government from the UK’s Children’s Commissioners

Date: 28th February 2019
Category: Civil Rights and Freedoms, Equal protection from violence, Family Environment and Alternative Care, General measures of implementation, General principles, Other human rights treaties and mechanisms


A joint letter from the Children’s Commissioners for Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland was sent to Rt. Hon Stephen Barclay MP, the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union. This letter seeks assurances on some of the immediate issues facing children arising from Brexit.

The Commissioners have immediate concerns about the provision for children from the 1st April 2019. In the letter they have outlined some of the most pressing issues for children and their safety:

  • Co-operation on child protection and law enforcement: We need to ensure that strong child protection protocols, including information-sharing, are in place as soon as we lose EU co-operation.
  • Co-operation on family law matters: Ongoing co-operation between jurisdictions, including mutual recognition of civil child protection cases is vital for the immediate safety of the children concerned, and the long-term protection of their right to family life.
  • Criminal records and staff vetting: It is vital for the safety of children that EU national staff continue to be able to work with children, and to do so having been adequately vetted. This requires that the criminal record clearance continues to be informed by intelligence from other countries in which the professional has worked.

The Commissioners have asked for a formal response replying to all the points in the letter by the 4th March. To read the letter in full, click here