Parents in Scotland could be reported to a state-appointed named person if their child has not been shown “love, hope and spirituality”, a senior Government advisor has suggested.
Bob Fraser, who is promoting a controversial scheme to assign every child in Scotland a named person, made the comments at an NHS conference of childcare workers last month.
He maintained that the legislation is about ensuring “positive well-being” for all children not just for those identified as “in need”.
“Every child deserves to have positive well-being. We have had suggestions of different indicators, of love, hope and spirituality. I am not wedded.
“The Act is there at the moment. But in a few years, if people feel it is right, they should change that”, he added.
A spokesman for the No to Named Persons (NO2NP) campaign group said: “This is a dark, deeply worrying and insidious development.
“Apparently the named person will police family life according to some ever-shifting ‘happiness index’. It’s an impossible standard for parents to measure up to.”
NO2NP have launched a new petition against the scheme.
Conservative MSP Liz Smith commented: “This is exactly the sort of nonsense which critics of the named person scheme feared would happen.
“Parents will be horrified at the suggestion of being targeted because a state guardian doesn’t regard their home as sufficiently spiritual.”
The Named Person scheme is part of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act, which was passed at Holyrood last year.
Legal action brought by charities and concerned parents begins at the highest court in Scotland today.
In January, judge Lord Pentland dismissed the judicial review of the scheme, but today and tomorrow an appeal of his decision is taking place at the Inner House of the Court of Session.