Revised Statutory Guidance for Children’s Services Planning

Date: 12th February 2020
Category: Child rights impact assessments, General measures of implementation, Policies & procedures

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This guidance provides local authorities and health boards, working in partnership with other public bodies and organisations, with information and advice about how they should exercise the functions conferred by Part 3 of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014.

This revised guidance has been developed as a result of a public consultation which ran from 25th March 2019 to 17th June 2019, and will relate to Children’s Services Plans from 1st April 2020 onwards.

In its consultation response Together highlighted that the guidance should be strengthened in two key areas - ensuring the participation of children and young people from the outset and ensuring the use of Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessments (CRWIAs).

The revised guidance continues to promote a collaborative and partnership approach with the third sector and highlights the importance that services are ‘integrated’. It further emphasises the importance of embedding children’s rights during the planning process. In addition to the requirements placed on Scottish Ministers and public authorities to report how they have further the effect of the UNCRC in Scotland, the revised version also suggests the use of the Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA) to inform Children’s Services Plan. It also makes reference to the Scottish Government’s commitment to incorporating the UNCRC into domestic law by Spring 2021, which may place new requirements on public authorities.

The guidance also added that the Scottish Government will review all Children’s Services Plans between April and October of the year of submission.