New reports on Scotland’s Barnahus model

Date: 1st October 2021
Category: Child justice system, Special protection measures

A child's drawing of a yellow and red house with a sun on the left and a rain cloud on the right. Above the house is a blue sky.

A new report outlining the developments in national policy, practice and research to inform Scotland’s Baranhus model has been published. Alongside this, Scottish Government circulated its vision of the Barnahus model, detailing how it should be implemented and the values that should underpin the model.

Barnahus, Icelandic for ‘Child’s House’ and has been implemented in 22 countries in Europe and is considered to be best practice internationally. The Barnahus model limits the number of times victims and witnesses of crimes have to recount their experience to different professionals, as all the services (including justice, child protection, medical examination and trauma recovery and family support) come to the child under one roof. This approach reduces the risk of the child experiencing further trauma and enables them to start recovering from their experiences much more quickly. Evidence from Europe highlights that where Barnahus has been introduced, there has been an increase in the number of cases being reported and prosecuted, as well as reduced delays in the justice process.