CYCJ Responds to the Call for Views on Children (Care and Justice) Bill

The Education, Children and Young People Committee at Holyrood is currently in the process of scrutinising the Children (Care and Justice) (Scotland) Bill. As part of this work they issued a call for views, to gain different perspectives on the Bill and how it will affect young people; this closed in mid-March 2023.

The Children (Care and Justice) Bill is a significant piece of legislation which promises major changes to existing youth justice practice and procedures. Shifting towards a more rights-based approach it defines all under 18’s as children, and changes how children are supported by allowing equal access to the Children’s Hearings System. In cases where the deprivation of liberty is deemed necessary, it mandates that children should be housed within the secure care estate – rather than within a YOI –  effectively ending the practice of incarcerating children in prison. Other areas of the youth justice system that are affected include: diverting cases away from the adult court system; changes to the criteria surrounding secure care, CSOs and MRC’s; changes in provision and process for those who have been caused harm; and increased regulation re. cross-border placements.

Taken alongside the Scottish Government’s commitment to incorporating UNCRC, it brings us closer to a rights-respecting youth justice system in Scotland and takes us one step closer to realising the commitments outlined in The Promise.

CYCJ Director Fiona Dyer also presented evidence in person to the Education, Children and Young People Committee on March 22nd. To watch the session back in full, click here

Download Children's Care and Justice Bill: CYCJ Evidence

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Children's and Young People's Centre for Justice
University of Strathclyde
Lord Hope Building, Level 6
141 St. James Road Glasgow G4 0LT

(0141) 444 8622

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