Advice and Investigations

The advice and investigations team answer questions about children’s rights and will signpost you to organisations that may be able to help you.

There may also be other actions we can take to help resolve issues that affect the rights of both individual and groups of children and young people in Scotland.

Getting advice and information about children’s rights

The best way to contact us is by email at [email protected]

If you are a child or young person and you need advice, information or just want to tell the Commissioner something you are concerned about, the advice and investigations officer will try to respond to you right away. You can email us, call us on our children and young person’s freephone number (0800 019 1179) or contact us by text (0770 233 5720)—we will get back to you as soon as we can.

If you are an adult and you want to contact us by telephone, we use a call back system to help us manage workloads. This means someone here at the Commissioner’s office will take brief details about your question and how to contact you. We can then start looking at finding the right information for you before writing to you or calling you back. In the meantime, you might want to have a look at the links to FAQs, case studies and other information on this page as you might find the information you need.

Please note that we cannot give you legal advice.

We also cannot investigate:

  • anything that duplicates another organisation’s legal powers,
  • any issues reserved to the UK Government,
  • anything concerning the decision of a court or tribunal, or
  • anything currently before a court or tribunal.

If you're worried a child or young person is at risk of harm

If you're worried about this you should contact your local social work department or Police Scotland on telephone number 101.

Find out the contact details of your local social work department.

FAQs and case studies

Investigations happening now

Local authority duties around secure accommodation

We’ve heard that when local authorities place children in secure accommodation, some children may be deprived of their liberty without due process of law. If that’s true, it needs to change as a matter of urgency.

Our investigation into this issue.

Recent investigations

Restraint and seclusion in Scotland’s schools

Restraint and seclusion are carried out in Scotland’s schools, but we knew there were no consistent policies or procedures around when they took place, and that what did exist often wasn’t grounded in human rights principles. Our investigation and subsequent action managed to get this changed.

Our investigation into this issue.

Contacting us

When you contact us we'll make sure a member of our Advice and Investigations team gets back to you. Nick, Linda and Maria have a lot of experience talking about rights-related issues, and will listen to what you have to say in a sensitive way that respects your confidentiality.

You can reach us by:

Email: [email protected]

Tel: 0131 346 5350

Children and young people’s freephone: 0800 019 1179

Text: 0770 233 5720 (Texts will be charged at your standard network rate)

Complaining about us

If you want to complain about the Children and Young People’s Commissioner Scotland, you can find out how to do so here.

Unacceptable actions policy

We have a policy that sets out:

  • the behaviours and actions we consider unacceptable when people contact our office, and
  • how we'll take action against these behaviours and actions.

Download our unacceptable actions policy.