Every Scottish child to have a state-appointed overseer: new bill
EDINBURGH, June 6, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Scottish government is proposing a bill that would appoint a government supervisor to oversee every child in the country from birth onward.
Children’s Minister Aileen Campbell said that under the Children and Young People Bill, the responsibility for appointing a “named person” for each child from birth, will lie with local health boards. These persons, who will be social or health workers, will “promote, support or safeguard the well-being of the child or young person.”
There have been very few reservations about the bill raised in Scotland’s devolved parliament at Holyrood.
The Iona Institute, a conservative think tank, noted that most of the MLAs have voiced only procedural concerns such as how social workers are going to oversee their new charges and how many children will be assigned per “named person."
Conservative deputy leader Jackson Carlaw only suggested the measure is “a very huge enterprise."
“How many named persons do you anticipate there will be? What will the turnover be in named persons? And how in practice does that really establish a bond of confidence on which people feel they can rely?” he asked.
Aileen Campbell responded, “It is important to realize that while there will be a named person for every child, not every child will need interaction with that named person.”
The Schoolhouse Home Education Association has warned that the bill will open up a new totalitarian direction for Scottish society. The group called it “propaganda designed to fool the sheeple."
The bill, they said, is not intended to protect the rights or safety of children. Rather, “it is designed to establish universal citizen surveillance via parent licensing and early interference, effectively ensuring state oversight and ownership of all children in Scotland."
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“The agenda that drives” the bill, they said, “has been mooted many times before; indeed it has even been put into practice with catastrophic consequences.”
Stuart Waiton, a lecturer in sociology and criminology at Abertay University in Dundee described the legislation as “dystopian” and warned that “the potential for professional intervention into family life is growing."
“The recognition of the importance of privacy, of the authority of parents and the protection of this privacy and authority by society is declining fast,” Waiton said. the bill is a sign of the increasing government pressure against the “autonomous family,” which he called “a hugely important building block for British society."
“It is noticeable that at the level of policy this idea has completely disappeared,” he added.
“Today it is assumed parenting is simply too hard, children are simply too vulnerable and risks are simply too great to allow for this luxury called 'privacy'. This is why nobody is attacking this new bill in defence of privacy and the autonomous family,” he said.
The bill says that its purpose is to fulfill the requirements of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).
In Ireland, former MEP Dana Scallon has strongly warned that many measures are being put into place in the name of the UNCRC that trample on the rights of families and parents to raise their children. Last year, opposition to the proposed “children’s rights” law voiced precisely this concern as the law was set to subject children and families to state intervention and monitoring with the constant threat of removal.
The Yes side, with huge financial support from the government and the European Union, and an almost invisible opposition campaign, won by a vast majority.