Do not tag young people at the expense of support, says Scotland’s Children’s Commissioner

Over-use of electronic tagging of young people could damage support
and care services, according to Kathleen Marshall, Children’s
Commissioner for Scotland writes Maggie Wood.

Speaking at the Association of Directors of Social Work conference,
Marshall warned that using tagging in an attempt to reduce anti-
social behaviour may come at the expense of providing care to
children and young people. Edinburgh is due to start a pilot scheme
on the use of electronic tagging of young offenders.

She said, “Practitioner after practitioner tells me they are
not in a position to provide support, and report after report tell
us that children who offend are also the children most in need of
care and attention.”

Marshall also said that the Scottish executive should not split
youth justice from welfare in the Childrens Hearing System. Recent
reports suggested such a move could be part of the
Executive’s review of the CHS.

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