Children`s commissioner announces review of services to protect young people`s rights

The Children’s Commissioner for Wales has announced a
far-reaching review of arrangements to safeguard and promote the
rights and welfare of young people in Wales, writes
Alex Dobson

During a speech to the all Wales social services conference in
Swansea, Peter Clarke outlined plans that will include setting up
an advocacy, whistleblowing and complaints procedure in every
social services department in the principality.

He told delegates at the conference that social services
departments played a key role in the lives of the most vulnerable
children. They had the ability to have a positive impact on
children and young people’s lives, including opening up a range of
educational and social opportunities to help young people realise
their potential.

But he said that there was an undoubted need for a national
advocacy, whistleblowing and complaints procedure and stressed the
importance of giving children a role in shaping the services and

“I hope that the report of this review will be an invaluable
policy-making tool, helping to shape the future of children’s
services in Wales, and making the ambitious goals of those working
within those departments achievable,” he said.

Delegates heard that children and young people would be involved
in both the design and the evaluation of the mapping exercise.

Clarke told the conference that he intends to publish his report
in February next year, and it would be followed by a full
evaluation of services in 2003-4.



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