Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 ('the 2014 Act')

An Act to achieve a number of children's policy objectives, as well as deliver public service reform in line with the 2011 Christie Commission.

In particular, the following parts of the Act are relevant to Staf's work:

  • Part 1: Seeks to give further effect to the UNCRC, including requiring public authorities to report every three years on progress made towards this.
  • Part 9: Puts Corporate Parenting on a statutory footing.
  • Part 10: Extends eligibility for 'Aftercare'.
  • Part 11: Introduced a new category of 'Continuing Care'.

Part 9 - Corporate Parenting:

  • Part 9 puts Corporate Parenting on a statutory basis, setting out which bodies are Corporate Parents, and their duties and responsibilities to looked-after young people.
  • Corporate parents must publish a 'corporate parenting plan' and report on progress towards delivering this. Scottish Ministers must report to Parliament every three years on how Scotland has exercised its corporate parenting responsibilities.

Part 10 - Aftercare:

  • The 2014 Act provides that any young person who ceases to be looked after by the local authority on or after their 16th birthday is eligible for Aftercare and extends eligibility up to and including the age of 25.
  • Eligible young people may request Aftercare - the local authority must then carry out an assessment of whether they have 'eligible needs' that cannot be met by other means.

Part 11 - Continuing Care:

  • Section 67 introduces 'Continuing Care', requiring local authorities to allow a young person who was looked after away from home to remain in their last placement, if that is what they wish.
  • A young person eligible for Continuing Care will be able to remain in their placement up until their 21st birthday. This is being introduced gradually by secondary legislation.
  • There are exceptions: if the young person's last placement was in secure accommodation; if their carer is unable or unwilling to provide the placement; or if to do so would significantly adversely affect their welfare.
  • The exceptions do not remove the local authorities' duty to provide Continuing Care but mean that they no longer have a duty to provide exactly the same accommodation they were in when leaving care.
  • Under Section 10 of the 2014 Act local authorities have to inform Scottish Ministers and the Care Inspectorate about the death of any young person in receipt of Continuing Care.

Part 13 - Kinship Care:

  • Section 71 requires local authorities to provide 'kinship care assistance' to a child or young person that is subject to a 'Kinship Care Order'.
  • Section 72 sets out what is considered a Kinship Care Order: a court order that requires a child to live with a 'qualified person' or an order appointing that person as guardian of a child. A qualified person cannot be a parent of the child but may be a relative or friend of a relative.
  • Section 73 defines assistance as the provision of: counselling, advice, information, financial support or subsidised services.

Read it in full