'Named person' scheme

On 19 February 2014, the Scottish Parliament decided that every child in Scotland should have a ‘named person’ – a state official tasked with looking after their ‘wellbeing’, defined as “happiness”.

More than two years later on 28 July 2016, in the case of The Christian Institute and others v The Lord Advocate (Scotland) five UK Supreme Court judges unanimously struck down the central provisions of the scheme.

The legislation required the named person to record and share confidential information concerning the wellbeing of children and their parents.

The Court stated that these data sharing provisions in the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act breach the right to a private and family life under article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

It also ruled that it had to be made clear that any advice offered by a named person is entirely optional.

New Named Person legislation may still be put forward but it would be impossible for it to operate in the way the Scottish Government originally wanted.



Parents: Named Person
law was 'enemy of

Trust between parents and schools was seriously threatened by the legislation behind the Named Person plans, the Scottish Parent Teacher Council (SPTC) has said.


Data rights group: ‘Named person trials could be illegal’

Scottish councils have been told to review pilot versions of the Named Person scheme, after the UK Supreme Court suggested they could be breaking the law last week.


Minister continues to ignore critics of Named Person plans

The Scottish Government has sustained further criticism on its reaction to last week’s Supreme Court ruling on the Named Person scheme.


Swinney downgrades Named Person advice to ‘optional’

Scotland’s Deputy First Minister John Swinney has warned local authorities that state guardians can only offer optional advice, after last week’s Supreme Court judgment on the Named Person scheme.


‘Named Person ruling raises wider issue of family rights’

Comment, by Colin Hart
Director of The Christian Institute

A growing number of parents in England have discovered that local councils are being told when they have taken a child to an Accident and Emergency department.

Follow @christianorguk