Bing search engine introduces child porn warnings

The Scotsman | 31 July 2013

MICROSOFT has introduced a “pop-up” warning on its Bing search engine that tells UK users that they are searching for illegal child abuse images.

The company said today that anyone using the engine to search for such material will trigger the Bing Notification Platform message warning that tells them the content they are looking for is against the law and provides a link to a counselling service.

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‘Named person’ plans risk “disproportionate state influence"

Holyrood Magazine | 31 July 2013

Government plans to provide every child across the country with a ‘named person’ run the risk of being seen as “disproportionate state influence”, the body representing Scotland’s legal profession has warned. Under the Children and Young People (Scotland) Bill, which will be considered by MSPs in committee after summer recess, every person under the age of 18 will have a ‘named person’, typically a health worker or teacher.  

Ministers envisage the ‘named person’, which is part and parcel of the Getting it Right for Every Child (GIRFEC) approach, will provide a single point of contact to help families access services and flag up any concerns over a child’s wellbeing to other agencies.  

However, in written evidence to the Education and Culture Committee as part of its consultation on the Bill, the Law Society of Scotland has suggested that the provisions could clash with the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).

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Kinship care in Glasgow to receive half a million pounds in Lottery funding | 30 July 2013

The Big Lottery Fund Scotland today (30 JULY) announces its latest package of funding worth nearly £3 million to seven projects across Scotland. Children and young people in kinship care will benefit from a grant of over £450,000 from the Big Lottery Fund’s Investing in Communities programme.

Recent research estimates that one in 77 children is in kinship care with this figure likely to increase. Kinship carers are grandparents, aunts, uncles and family friends, who care for children because their natural parents are unable to do so. The Notre Dame Centre in Glasgow was established in 1931 to support the social, psychological and educational wellbeing of all children, young people and families experiencing emotional difficulties.

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Children and Young People Bill falls short, warns human rights commission

Holyrood Magazine | 29 July 2013

Government legislation designed to establish Scotland as the best place to grow up must be significantly strengthened, the country’s human rights commissioner has warned.

Responding to a consultation on the recently-launched Children and Young People (Scotland) Bill, the Scottish Human Rights Commission (SHRC) said proposed duties on ministers regarding the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) failed to go far enough.

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Scots police seek 'human trafficking' aid

BBC News | 29 July 2013

The Scottish business community has been asked to help in the latest campaign against people trafficking. A new information leaflet has been produced to help increase awareness of the issue and gather information from local communities.

Human trafficking often has links with organised crime gangs, involves both adults and children. It takes many forms including sexual exploitation, as well as forcing victims into manual or domestic labour. The most recent figures - from 2011 - showed there were 93 suspected victims of trafficking in Scotland.

The new initiative is designed to increase awareness of the problem, and a leaflet entitled Human Trafficking - Reading the Signs has been designed by Police Scotland.

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All children to be offered flu vaccinations by the end of 2015

The Herald | 27 July 2013

For the first time, all children will have the chance to be protected from the disease.

Previously, only those who were classed as being in one of the most at-risk groups – such as young carers or children with conditions such as asthma – would have been offered vaccinations. The vaccinations are being phased in from this autumn and will be rolled out over the next two years.

The first phase will see all children aged two to three offered the vaccine this year, as well as children from a number of primary schools in every health board area.

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Call to fund counselling for every pupil at high school

The Herald | 26 July 2013

A CALL has been made for the Government to fund counselling for every secondary school pupil in Scotland.

The group representing 37,000 counsellors and psychotherapists in Britain said funding was needed so the service is available to young people who need it. It has been proposed by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) in its submission to a consultation on the new Children and Young People (Scotland) Bill.

The Bill includes ­measures to improve access to counselling for troubled families but BACP said this falls short of providing it to all young people.

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Families turn to grandparents for help amid childcare lottery

The Herald | 25 July 2013

CHILDCARE costs in Scotland are heaping pressure on families and forcing more parents to ask grandparents to make up for gaps in provision, a new report claims.

It points to a wide variation in levels of provision and cost between council areas, with care in the most expensive local authorities costing 80% more than in the least expensive.

The average cost of nursery care for a child under the age of two is more than £100 a week, while the average cost of childcare for those aged over five in Scotland is £50 a week. However, parents in some areas are having to pay significantly more, with the highest fees reported to be £235 a week for a child up to the age of two ­receiving 25 hours of care.

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Parents face Scottish 'childcare lottery'

BBC News | 25 July 2013

The cost of nursery care and out-of-school care varies significantly across Scotland, according to a new report.

The study by Family and Childcare Trust and Children in Scotland said there was an 80% variation in the cost of nursery care and a 92% variation for over-5s.  It indicated that while the price of nursery care appeared to have stabilised, out of school care costs had increased.

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Progress made in protection of adults

Eskdale & Liddesdale Advertiser | 25 July 2013

DUMFRIES and Galloway’s adult protection committee has published its latest report and says good progress has been made.

The multi-agency committee’s role is to ensure the development and delivery of robust systems for the safeguarding of adults at risk. This is its second biennial report which reports progress and development from November 2010 to March 2012.

Almost five years after the introduction of legislation, the priorities of the committee have been to strengthen quality assurance arrangements and performance assessment and gauge the impact and effectiveness of adult support and protection activity.

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Work with us - current opportunities

University of Stirling | 24 July 2013

Current opportunities based at the University of Stirling's School of Applied Social Science:

Lecturer in Social Work

A full-time lecturer is required for the team delivering qualifying social work education. Applications are invited from potential candidates with a strong commitment to social work education and research; to team working; and to enhancing the contribution of Social Work to Applied Social Research. Teaching, research and administrative expectations will be commensurate with the level of appointment as outlined in the job specification. The successful candidate will contribute to the range of duties associated with the successful delivery of qualifying social work education. The post holder will also be expected to contribute to the School’s research strategy in terms of both publication and income generation.

Closing date: 7 August 2013.  
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Practice Development Coordinator, WithScotland

This role supports collaboration across research activities, policy and frontline practice so that expertise can be shared quickly and purposefully. An important part of the role is to work closely with practitioners to establish how best to make sure they have access to the knowledge, information and resources they need. The post holder will also work to sustain the capacity of the Community of Expertise to continue providing advice and support to services and individuals working to protect children and young people in Scotland. 

Closing date: 15 August 2013.
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Nursing leaders warn health checks for children at risk

The Herald | 23 July 2013

SOME young children may miss out on important new universal health checks because of staff shortages, the Royal College of Nursing in Scotland has warned.

Director Theresa Fyffe said many health visitors who carry out the screening reviews were suffering from burnout because of overwork. She warned that the service could be forced to prioritise which youngsters are seen.

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Child poverty 'costs Glasgow £395m'

BBC News | 18 July 2013

Child poverty costs Scotland's largest council £395m a year, a new report has claimed.  Researchers said the impact of the problem in the Glasgow City Council area was the third highest in the UK. 

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Crackdown on scammers who exploit the vulnerable

The Herald | 12 July 2013

Doorstep salesmen, dodgy builders, thieving carers and internet scammers are among the targets of a new push to make Scotland a hostile place for those who exploit vulnerable adults.

Physical abuse and mistreatment in the community and care homes were among the concerns that led to the introduction of laws to protect adults who are vulnerable because of their age, a learning disability or a health condition.

But financial exploitation, particularly of elderly people, is now the leading concern among those with responsibility for implementing the legislation.

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Children's caffeine intake 'should be controlled'

BBC News | 10 July 2013

Tighter controls are needed to prevent children consuming high-caffeine energy drinks, a BBC investigation has heard. Professor Mike Lean, an expert in nutrition, said children should be banned from buying highly-caffeinated drinks in the same way as alcohol.

Manufacturers representatives have said youths should not be drinking them. But research for the European Food Safety Agency suggested more than two-thirds of the UK's 10 to 18-year-olds have drunk high-caffeine energy drinks.

Caffeine is defined as a drug because it stimulates the central nervous system. In both children and adults, too much caffeine can cause difficulty concentrating and sleeping and increased heart rate.

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Early Childhood Education and Care Review

Scottish Government | 09 July 2013

The Scottish Government has published an overview of the current situation regarding early childhood education and care provision in Scotland, England, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Slovenia, France and the Netherlands. For each of these nations the review provides a country report (information on Scotland and England are presented in separate chapters) with detailed information on the national frameworks of ECEC, guiding principles and objectives, governance, types of services, types of providers, funding and costs, systems of quality assurance and access levels.  

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Taking Children Into Care Debate

Scottish Government | 09 July 2013

During its meeting of 25 June 2013 the Scottish Parliament Education and Culture Committee took evidence on taking children into care and on the Children and Young People Bill.  

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IRISS Survey

IRISS | 09 July 2013

IRISS is exploring the potential role and effectiveness of arts in supporting creativity in the workforce to deliver positive outcomes for individuals. They are aiming to illustrate how initiatives using creative approaches are currently being applied in Scotland.

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IRISS D Cards; Difficulties, Decisions, Deliberations

IRISS | 09 July 2013

Creating spaces for discussion between people from a variety of organisations and backgrounds is not an easy task. It requires time, resources and commitment. It also calls for participants to be flexible and honest about their relationships, as well as being open to experiencing alternative ways of relating to each other. This diversity can breed innovation, energy, consensus and understanding of a broader context, but it can also lead to inaction and frustration.   If you want to create space for discussion, you could try using new D Cards from IRISS.  

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NSPCC launches campaign to help Scottish parents protect their children from sexual abuse

NSPCC | 08 July 2013

The vast majority (80%) of Scots in a new YouGov poll think that parents should be responsible for talking to their primary school aged children about how to keep safe from sexual abuse, but less than half (48%) of Scottish parents have done so according to the survey, conducted on behalf of the NSPCC. The findings come as the charity launches a new UK-wide campaign to help parents protect their children from sexual abuse.  

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Glasgow moves for White Ribbon status to end violence against women

STV | 08 July 2013

In its fight to break ingrained negative attitudes and raise awareness about gender-based violence, Glasgow City Council’s Executive Committee passed a motion on June 27 to work towards achieving what is called White Ribbon City status by 2014.  

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Child Sexual Abuse: Working with Adult Survivors – A Basic Awareness Programme

Roshni | 08 July 2013

A unique e-Learning programme has been developed for frontline staff in the public, private and third sectors.

The Child Sexual Abuse eLearning Programme, supported by the Scottish Government, will increase the skills and confidence of frontline staff in responding to adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse, including male and minority ethnic survivors.  

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Children and Young People's Views on Child Protection Systems in Scotland

The Scottish Government | 08 July 2013

This review considers the views and experiences of children and young people on child protection systems in Scotland. It aims to inform service delivery, communications on child protection and future potential ways to engage children and young people on this issue. 

The findings of this review will form the basis for future research on gathering the views of children and young people on child protection systems in Scotland.

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Children and young people’s experiences of, and views on, issues relating to the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child

The Scottish Government | 08 July 2013

The report of a Government commissioneed project to collect, collate, analyse, review, summarise and present evidence on the views and experiences of children and young people in Scotland on matters linked to the UNCRC.

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Children and young people’s experiences of, and views on, issues relating to the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: Research Findings

The Scottish Government | 08 July 2013

Research findings of a Scottish Government commissioned review exploring the experiences and views of children and young people in Scotland on matters linked to implementation of the UNCRC.

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Social work warning over cost-cutting culture

The Herald | 05 July 2013

Crucial government social service reforms are being threatened by cuts, according to Scotland's leading social worker.

Sandy Riddell, the new president of the Association of Directors of Social Work (ADSW), said measures to improve services by integrating health and social care could be at risk in a cost-cutting culture which knows "the price of everything but the value of nothing".

The Scottish Government published a bill in May to require health boards and local authorities to work better together in the provision of care in communities. Ministers feel that encouraging more partnership working without legislating has not delivered results fast enough.

Similar moves will affect children's services, criminal justice and public protection, Mr Riddell said.

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Robots to help people with dementia in Western Isles

BBC News | 05 July 2013

NHS Western Isles is putting robots into the homes of people with dementia as part of a pilot scheme to help them to continue to live independently.

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Childcare costs - not quality - must come down | 04 July 2013

New legislation aims to make Scotland ‘the best place to grow up’ but the details are lacking on how this can be done, says Jackie Brock.

The Children and Young People Bill currently making its way through the Scottish Parliament has been hailed as many things. To some, it is a game-changing piece of legislation which will help realise the Scottish Government’s stated ambition of making Scotland “the best place to grow up” by offering a helping hand and making welcome provisions for working families, vulnerable youngsters and children in care.

To others, the legal provisions in the bill, around children’s rights for example, fall well short of these laudable and ambitious aspirations.

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Dementia Cafe serves patients in Galashiels

Border Telegraph | 04 July 2013

A NEW service to help dementia sufferers and their families has been launched in Galashiels.

NHS support workers Claire Knill and Jackie McKenzie have teamed up with Alzeimer's Scotland representative Rosanne McGee to set up the Dementia Cafe, the only one of its kind in the town.

The NHS funded initiative works as an informal drop-in service for those are worried about their memory, or have been diagnosed with dementia, offering both practical guidance and emotional support.  

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Fears over increase in children’s sex texts

The Scotsman | 03 July 2013

Soaring numbers of the Capital’s children – including girls as young as 12 – are producing and sharing indecent images of themselves online, safety campaigners have warned. New figures suggest at least two instances of “sexting” are being reported in the Capital every week, with youngsters left “depressed and suicidal” when “parasite” websites circulate the content they produce. Children’s welfare leaders said the trend highlighted the need for good quality sex education, which they said should begin in primary school.  

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New trends in child sexual abuse offending reported by CEOP | 03 July 2013

New trends in child sexual abuse offending and the growing availability of the internet in the developing world are likely to exacerbate the threat to children, the latest findings from the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre warn.  

In its annual Threat Assessment of Child Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (TACSEA), the use of the ‘hidden internet’ and the live streaming of abuse are identified as new ways that offender’s are sexually abusing children.  

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70,000 child abuse images and videos shared | 02 July 2013

Every year the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (Ceop) produces an assessment of child abuse. Here are some of the findings relating to the UK from the latest report: 8,000 reports of indecent images of children being shared in 2012 70,000 images and videos shared - a two-fold increase on 2011 .

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Working Together 2013 gives social workers a new opportunity to tackle child neglect

Community Care | 01 July 2013

Professionals working with children know that parental neglect is a notoriously difficult problem to identify and assess, writes Chris Cuthbert, NSPCC’s lead expert on tackling child neglect. But without these initial steps it’s unlikely families will get the support they need to turn situations around and keep children safe.  

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Playing For Keeps - Scotland's National Play Strategy

Scottish Government | 01 July 2013

The vital role of play to children’s wellbeing and development has been recognised in Scotland’s first national Play Strategy. The Scottish Government’s vision for play will improve young lives and is the latest step towards making Scotland the best place to grow up. An action plan will follow this autumn, setting out how the strategy will be implemented.  

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Latest child poverty statistics

CPAG | 01 July 2013

The newly-released annual statistics for 2011/12 showed that in Scotland the number of children living in poverty fell from 330,000 in 1998/99 (31% of all children) to 200,000 in 2011/12 (20% of all children). However, this hard won progress is now overshadowed by IFS forecasts (see below) of a massive surge in child poverty as UK tax and benefit changes kick in. The relative poverty statistics also showed that across the UK two-thirds of the children below the relative poverty line are now from families in work.

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Welfare Warning Over Child Poverty Levels

Evening Times | 01 July 2013

The latest figures from the Chief Statistician show that more than three quarters of a million people in the country are living in poverty.  

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12 year olds kept in police cells overnight

Scotland On Sunday | 01 July 2013

CHILDREN as young as 12 are among hundreds who have been held overnight in police cells in Scotland over the past two years. Some youngsters have been kept in custody for several days, with one 15-year-old boy being detained for more than 88 hours.  

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Dismay as reform fails to stop criminal records for children

The Herald | 01 July 2013

CHILDREN'S groups and charities, including Scotland's Commissioner for Children and Young People, have expressed dismay that a legal reform bill has failed to include a pledge to increase the age of criminal responsibility from eight to 12.  

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More Care Homes Facing Unannounced Inspections

AllMediaScotland | 01 July 2013

THE number of unannounced inspections of care homes in Scotland has risen in each of the last two years, figures released today show. Last year inspectors from the care watchdog completed 1400 inspection of care homes for older people – of which more than 98 per cent were unannounced. 

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Courtroom Treatment of Vulnerable Victims Faces Review

The Guardian | 01 July 2013

An investigation is being launched in England into aggressive courtroom cross-examination of vulnerable victims in the wake of high-profile child sex abuse cases. 

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NHS Education Scotland recently launched the nation's first on-line course about FAS/FASD

Wave Trust | 01 July 2013

NHS Education Scotland recently launched the nation's first on-line course about FAS/FASD.  

The resource has been developed to support a range of activity led by the Scottish Government to substantially reduce the harm caused by alcohol consumption in pregnancy across Scotland. The course content was developed by ‘Children in Scotland’ with input from the child and maternal health team at NES and the Scottish Government Fetal Alcohol harm national working group. The content was transformed into an interactive e-learning resource and the draft resource was tested and piloted by the maternal and child health team at NES and a group of clinical midwives and lecturers.

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