Government child protection guidance updated

The Scottish Government has revealed three manifesto commitments on child protection. Local services for vulnerable children are expected to benefit from the updated guidance for health professionals.

The three new documents are: The National Framework for child protection learning and development, the Risk Assessment Framework and Child Protection Guidance for health professionals.

Minister for Children and Young People Aileen Campbell said: “Ensuring protection is in place for all children or young people at risk from neglect or harm is vitally important. The completion of these commitments reflect the Scottish Government’s distinctive and strong commitment to working in partnership with practitioners across the child protection sector to best support local practice.

“These documents reflect the principles of Getting It Right For Every Child and an approach that puts the child at the centre by ensuring that children who may be at risk are identified earlier. Those working with children need the right skills and a clear understanding of the different roles and responsibilities right across local services.

“The publication of these resources will play a significant role in ensuring that services deliver a consistently high standard of support to our most vulnerable children and young people across Scotland.”

Minister for Public Health Michael Matheson said: “It is often a health professional who will have the first contact with such children or young people and I am pleased that we are able to support our professionals with a practical resource to provide guidance on how to approach this important responsibility.”

Scottish Conservative education spokeswoman Liz Smith said: “We fully support these moves given the overwhelming evidence which has been presented to the Education Committee urging all political parties to put in place measures to enhance the support for our most vulnerable children.

“What is most important however, is that we become more successful at earliest detection and that is why the Scottish Conservatives have been advocating a system of universal health visiting for our youngest children and their families.”