Uses clear and simple language
An information booklet explaining what a safeguarder is has been published by Children 1st.
Available on the Children 1st website, the charity is calling on those who work with children and young people, who have been appointed a safeguarder, to read the booklet.
A safeguarder is an independent person who protects a child or young person’s human rights, including making sure their best interests are protected, when a sheriff or Children’s Hearing panel need to decide what will happen next for a child.
Using clear and simple language and imagery, the booklet answers many questions and worries that children and young people may have about having a safeguarder. It sets out what a Safeguarder is, what the Safeguarder will do and how the safeguarder will make recommendations in the best interests of the child or young person.
Sarah-Louise, service manager at Children 1st, said: “It is really important that all children, young people and families who have been appointed a safeguarder read this booklet so that they understand what it means to have a Safeguarder and what that safeguarder will do.
“If a child has been appointed a safeguarder it means that they are already dealing with some difficult things in their life.
"A safeguarder will always meet with the child or young person to get to know them, learn about what they want and answer any questions they might have.
"Our new information booklet helps children, young people and families understand their role before this meeting takes place and how the Safeguarder will always represent the child’s best interests.
“We encourage youth workers, social workers, teachers, advocacy workers, youth justice workers, children’s rights officers and anyone else who is working with a child or young person who has been appointed a safeguarder to direct them to this booklet on our website.”
Safeguarders are not always needed, but there are times when a Children's Hearing panel or a sheriff might ask for a safeguarder to get involved. These reasons include:
- Having someone independent look at what is going on.
- Making sure all the important information is available, especially the views of children and young people.
- Having someone help to work around lots of disagreement between different people about what should happen for a child or young person.
- Making sure that children's rights and best interests are protected during the process.
Children 1st is contracted by the Scottish Government to operate and manage the national safeguarders panel.