Wednesday, 5th February 2020

The Independent Care Review has today published its final reports, calling for a major overhaul of care in Scotland in favour of a more caring, less process-focused system. Having examined all aspects of care and listened to more than 5,500 experiences, it has concluded that the system is fractured, bureaucratic and unfeeling for too many, and fails to adequately value the voices and experiences of those in it.  

We welcome the reports launched today, which put children’s voices and rights front and centre of an ambitious vision for reform.

We congratulate all who contributed to the Review, its Secretariat, and Chair Fiona Duncan. Over 1000 care experienced people shared their views, ideas, hopes and dreams about how Scotland can provide the most stable and loving environment to enable children and young people to thrive via the 1000 Voices project run by Who Cares? Scotland.

Five main reports have been published: The Promise (and a Pinky Promise for younger readers); The Plan; The Money; Follow the Money; and The Rules. Read the reports here.

The Promise identifies over 80 specific changes to be made to transform how Scotland cares for children and families. Recognition of children as rights holders is a strong theme throughout the report.

We look forward to digesting the changes proposed in full, but on first sight are really pleased to see wide-ranging recommendations, including on access to justice and legal remedies, and ensuring the rights of all children are respected, including where children are in conflict with the law. 

We are particularly pleased to see the recommendations on supporting the sibling relationships of children in care, by preventing separation, supporting continued relationships, and ensuring that siblings have all the necessary legal rights to have their voice heard in relation to their brothers and sisters, including notification of forthcoming hearings about their brothers and sisters and speedy rights of appeal if required.

Principal Solicitor Alison Reid was a member of the Rights Working Group during the Journey stage of the review. Clan Childlaw also took part in the Siblings Group discussions as a member of Stand Up for Siblings. 

Clan Childlaw solicitor Lucy Frazer appeared on BBC Scotland's The Nine on the eve of the launch of the Care Review to talk about the siblings in care and the case 'ABC' in which the Supreme Court judgment is currently awaited.