The Young ME Sufferers Trust (Tymes Trust) announced today that they will be standing shoulder-to-shoulder with campaigners in a court action aimed at forcing the Scottish Government to scrap plans to appoint a ‘Named Person' for every child under the age of 18.
The Trust, a partner body to The ME Association, said the plans – contained in the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 – would be dictatorial and without precedent.
Jane Colby, their executive director, said:
“This must not go unchallenged. The Named Person will automatically be given details of appointments with the child's doctor, and countless other personal information. No parent can opt out of this system. If the family misses an appointment, or disagrees with their doctor's suggested treatment, the Named Person can and will be told.”
Under the legislation, every child in Scotland under 18 – and there are more than a million – will be assigned a ‘named person' (someone other than their parents) who will have the power to ‘advise' and ‘inform' the child or discuss or raise matters about the child with the relevant authorities.
A Judicial Review of the scheme, which is not yet fully operational, is being mounted by a coalition of campaigners led by the Newcastle-based Christian Institute. A high-powered barrister, Aidan O'Neill QC, has already been briefed and will argue that Members of the Scottish Parliament are acting illegally and exceeding their powers by setting up the ‘Named Person' scheme in direct contravention of the European Convention on Human Rights.
Jane Colby said none of her Trust's funds would be put at risk.
Lesley Scott, the Trust's Scottish representative, added:
“The Named Person provision came from the GIRFEC trial – Getting It Right For Every Child. Far from getting it right, families in Highland tell me that GIRFEC's approach has led to a constant battle with schools and the local authority, who have not only failed to provide appropriate support, but disagreed with parents' views.”
Lesley Scott has recorded a video on the subject for the ‘No2NP' campaign that can be viewed on YouTube HERE.
To read the full Tymes Trust press statement, click HERE
Read the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 HERE