Consultation responses and evidence

One of the ways the Commissioner protects the rights of children and young people is to comment on proposed policies and legislation that may affect them. He does this by:

  • giving evidence to the Scottish Parliament around issues that affect children and young people,
  • responding to consultations around issues that affect children and young people, and
  • writing briefings for MSPs.

Consultation responses, Parliamentary evidence, MSP briefings and other policy submissions given since 2015 can be downloaded in PDF form below. Get in touch if you’d like to ask for evidence or responses from before this date.

2018

July

Age of Criminal Responsibility (Scotland) Bill: Evidence to the Equalities and Human Rights Committee

Evidence around the Bill that proposes to raise the Minimum Age of Criminal Responsibility from 8 to 12.

While our submission welcomes the move to raise the age, it argues the legislation doesn’t go far enough, and that the minimum age should rise to at least 16.

Submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child: Protecting and empowering children as human rights defenders

The Commissioner's written submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child on children and young people as human rights defenders, ahead of the Committee's Day of Discussion on the issue in September 2018.

February

Review of the Gender Recognition Act 2004

The Commissioner responds to Angela Constance MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Communities, Social Security and Equalities, on the review of the Gender Recognition Act 2004.

Empowering schools: A consultation on the provisions of the Education (Scotland) Bill

The Commissioner responds to Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills John Swinney MSP around this consultation.

January

Universal Periodic Review: Opportunities for Parliamentary involvement

A paper for the Equalities & Human Rights Committee on how the Scottish Parliament can feed into the reporting process of the UN Universal Periodic Review.

2017

November

Extending Children’s Rights 

A letter to John Swinney MSP responding to a consultation on extending children's rights.

Proposed Period Poverty Bill

The Commissioner responds to a consultation on a proposed bill to end period poverty.

Proposed Draft Police Act 1997/Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007 Remedial Order 2018

The Commissioner’s office responds to a consultation on a draft Remedial Order.

Prejudice-based bullying debate: MSP briefing

 

Child Poverty (Scotland) Bill (Stage 3): MSP briefing

October

Evidence and procedure review

The Commissioner responds to this consultation.

September

Review of Part 1 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995

Notes of an interview between our Policy Officer Megan Farr and the Scottish Government.

Supporting Children's Learning Code of Practice

A response to Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills John Swinney MSP around the Code of Practice.

August

Children and Young People (Information Sharing)(Scotland) Bill

The Commissioner responds to a call for evidence from the Education and Skills Committee.

Letter to John Swinney MSP on prejudice based bullying

A joint letter from the Commissioner and the EHRC around prejudice-based bullying in schools.

Proposed Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill

The Commissioner's office responds to John Finnie's consultation on this proposed Bill.

July

Position statement: Mosquito devices

In this position statement, the Commissioner calls for a ban on so-called "Mosquito" devices – which "repel" children by producing a sound which only they can hear – outlines the rights such devices infringe, and suggests a legislative framework through which they can be banned.

May

Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Bill (Stage 1) 

Commissioner Tam Baillie's response to the Justice Committee around the newly introduced Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Bill.

Child Poverty (Scotland) Bill (Stage 1): MSP briefing

April

Response to PE1635: Review of Section 11 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the Public Petitions Committee around a petition on Section 11 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995.

Healthcare needs in schools

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to a consultation around guidance for schools around the healthcare needs of pupils.

Petition PE1548: MSP briefing

An MSP briefing produced with ENABLE Scotland on public petition PE1548: National guidance on restraint and seclusion in schools.

March

Inquiry into hunger amongst children during the school holidays

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to an Inquiry from the UK Parliament's All-Party Parliamentary Group on Hunger.

Guidance on religious observance

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the Scottish Government consultation around religious observance guidance.

February

Personal and Social Education: MSP briefing

Briefing to the Scottish Parliament's Education and Skills Committee around the possibility of Scotland-wide guidelines for Personal and Social Education (PSE).

January

Evidence to Health and Sport Committee

Commissioner Tam Baillie's written evidence around historic abuse in football.

Consultation on the new National Health and Social Care Standards

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the consultation on new standards in health and social care.

Consultation on the sexual portrayal of under-18s in advertising

Commissioner Tam Baillie comments on the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) and Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice’s (BCAP) proposals for new rules.

Empowering teachers, parents and communities to achieve excellence and equity in education: a governance review

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the review.

2016

November

Standards in Scottish Schools etc Act 2000: draft statutory guidance

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to John Swinney MSP around this draft guidance.

October

Petition PE1603/N: Ensuring greater scrutiny, guidance and consultation on armed forces visits to schools in Scotland

In this letter to the Public Petitions Committee, former Commissioner Tam Baillie comments on this petition.

A new future for social security

Commissioner Tam Baillie comments on the Consultation on Social Security in Scotland.

A child poverty bill for Scotland

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the Scottish Government's consultation around its ambitions to eradicate child poverty.

September

Mental health in Scotland: a 10-year vision

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the Scottish Government's consultation around what Scotland's mental health services should look like in 10 years’ time.

Incorporating Digital Rights into the UNCRC

Response to Children's Commissioner for England Anne Longfield, who contacted other ombudspersons for children for advice around shaping a UNCRC General Comment on children's digital rights.

Children's exposure to environmental toxicants

Commissioner Tam Baillie's submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child's 2016 discussion on Children's Rights and the Environment.

Evidence on Scotland’s relationship with the EU

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to European and External Relations Committee's request for evidence around Scotland’s relationship with the EU following the UK's vote to leave the European Union.

August

Review of Scottish strategic police priorities

Commissioner Tam Baillie comments on the Scottish Government's review.

Police powers to search children and young people for alcohol

June

Commissioner Tam Baillie's response to the Scottish Government's consultation.

Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 non-statutory guidance part 1: children's rights duties

Commissioner Tam Baillie's response to the Scottish Government's consultation.

Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 statutory guidance part 3: children's services planning

Commissioner Tam Baillie's response to the Scottish Government's consultation.

May

Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (Time for Compliance) regulations 2016

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the Scottish Government's consultation.

Report on the application of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) in Scotland

This report to the UN looks at Covenant application with respect to the rights of children and young people.

April

A criminal offence of domestic abuse

Commissioner Tam Baillie comments on draft proposals around creating a specific offence of 'abusive behaviour in relation to a partner or ex-partner'.

January

UNCRPD draft delivery plan

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the Scottish Government's Draft Delivery Plan 2016-2020 for the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Education (Scotland) Bill (Stage 3): MSP Briefing

This joint briefing around key concerns in relation to the Bill's Schedule was produced by the Commissioner's office, the Equality and Human Rights Commission, Inclusion Scotland, the Scottish Human Rights Commission, Govan Law Centre, ENABLE Scotland and Together.

2015

December

Criminal Justice (Scotland) Bill (Stage 3): MSP Briefing

Education (Scotland) Bill (Stage 2): MSP Briefing

This joint briefing was produced with the Equality and Human Rights Commission, Inclusion Scotland, the Scottish Human Rights Commission, Govan Law Centre, ENABLE Scotland and Together (Scottish Alliance for Children’s Rights).

Digital learning and teaching strategy for Scotland

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the Scottish Government's draft Digital Learning and Teaching Strategy.

Response to consultation on the Police Act 1997 and the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007 Remedial Order 2015

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to a Scottish Government request for observations around the 2015 Remedial Order.

November

Response to inquiry on the Human Rights Act

Commissioner Tam Baillie outlines concerns around the UK Government's proposal for a British Bill of Rights and repeal of the Human Rights Act in this response to the European and External Relations Committee.

Response to pregnancy and parenthood in young people strategy

October

Commissioner Tam Baillie gives his views on the Scottish Government's strategy for young people who are pregnant or parents.

September

United Kingdom Children’s Commissioners’ response to the Home Office consultation “Reforming support for failed asylum seekers and other illegal immigrants”

The 4 UK children's commissioners' joint response to a Home Office consultation.

British Sign Language Bill (Stage 3): MSP Briefing

May

Evidence on the Education (Scotland) Bill

Commissioner Tam Baillie's response to Stage 1 consultation on the Bill.

Submission to the Scottish Parliament Public Petitions Committee on Petition PE1319: Improving youth football in Scotland

This submission to the Public Petitions Committee consists of:

  • a child rights impact assessment on the registration process for youth football in Scotland from a rights perspective, and
  • a research report exploring the views of young players.

April

Response to Petition PE1548: national guidance on restraint and seclusion in schools

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to Petition PE1548 at the Public Petitions Committee.

March

Evidence to the JCHR on UK compliance with the UNCRC

Air Weapons and Licensing (Scotland) Bill: MSP Briefing

Commissioner Tam Baillie's evidence to the Joint Committee for Human Rights gives an overview of key achievements and concerns in Scotland around children's rights, then focuses on the state of children's rights for groups highlighted by the Committee.

February

Evidence to the Justice Committee on the Human Trafficking and Exploitation (Scotland) Bill

Commissioner Tam Baillie's evidence focuses on issues around child trafficking he feels the Scottish Parliament's Bill must address.

Consultation on draft statutory guidance for part 9 (corporate parenting) of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act, 2014

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the draft guidance around the Act from a perspective explicitly based on children's rights.

Response to Legal Assistance in Scotland: Fit for the 21st Century

Commissioner Tam Baillie responds to the Law Society of Scotland's discussion paper on legal assistance, focusing on the potential impact of its proposals on children and young people.

January

Comments on the proposed British Sign Language (Scotland) Bill

Commissioner Tam Baillie comments on the Scottish Government's proposals from a rights-based perspective.