Scottish Named Person plans are a ‘gross interference’

Plans to assign a state guardian to every child in Scotland are a “gross interference” in family life, a newspaper has said.

The Scottish Daily Express editorial questioned the logic behind the Named Person scheme in light of failures by existing authorities.

It referred to the death of toddler Declan Hainey four years ago which “could have been avoided if social workers and health staff had shown the kind of professionalism expected”.

Gross interference

According to the newspaper, Declan died because of failures by social workers and health staff and his mother’s “prolonged neglect”.

Speaking about the Government’s plans, the editorial said: “Where is the logic in this gross interference in ordinary, decent family life when the existing authorities are shown to be guilty of such appalling incompetence?”

The Named Person initiative will see a state guardian assigned to every child between birth and 18-years-old.


They will be able to share information with a wide range of public authorities and may intervene without parental consent.

Under Scottish Government plans the Named Person scheme is set to be rolled out across the whole of Scotland by 2016, but it is already operating in some areas.

In July, a leading sociologist warned that the Scottish Government’s “grotesque” named person proposals are a “disturbing manifestation of the politicisation of parenting”


Dr Frank Furedi criticised a climate of over-zealous child protection policies, saying: “Government initiatives are underpinned by the assumption that parents cannot be trusted and must be subject to constant surveillance”.

Last month a child well being survey linked to the Named Person scheme was “paused” by a local council, after parents raised serious concerns about the intrusive nature of the research.

Dee Thomas, whose child took part in the questionnaire last year, is campaigning against the Named Person plans because of the nature of what her son was asked.

She said: “I think that the Named Person provisions effectively reduce the role of parenting to that of a technician working with a toolkit of Government approved prescriptives.”

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