Dan Peters 20 September 2019

Named person scheme dropped

A mandatory named person scheme for every child in Scotland – underpinned by law – will not now happen, deputy first minister John Swinney has announced.

Plans for every child to have a named person – part of the Children and Young People Act 2014 – had been waiting for information sharing legislation before being brought into force.

However, Mr Swinney said the Children and Young People Information Sharing Bill will now be withdrawn and the law on information sharing will not change.

The move comes after a panel of experts reviewed the data protection legislation that came into force last year and ‘concluded that the world has moved on significantly since the Bill was drafted’.

There has been controversy around when and how information should be shared by and with a named person.

Mr Swinney said information about a child will not be ‘routinely shared without their or their families’ knowledge or engagement’ and practitioners must ‘handle personal information in line with existing laws and guidance such as those applicable in relation to data protection, confidentiality and human rights’.

Existing voluntary schemes that provide a point of contact for support will continue under current legal powers.

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