Call to reduce number of children in care in Scotland

"Parents and academics have called for greater support for families to try to reduce the number of children in care" in Scotland, says this article from BBC News. The article cites research by Professor Andy Bilson which indicates that the number of children in care in Scotland has increased over the last few years, with a small decrease last year. "The rise was mainly in those cared-for by a relative or a foster carer," says the article. "Children cared-for in residential homes in Scotland has remained largely steady." According to Professor Bilson, the child protection system in Scotland has become "much more keen to blame [parents] rather than help them" and that the main reasons children were taken into care were neglect and emotional abuse, which may reflect concerns over "parents' lifestyles or the way they deal with their children."

Advocates in Scotland are calling on Scotland to adopt a model used in New York which "trains parents to become advocates for other parents and help them access the support and services they need." The article includes an interview with David Tobis, who helped develop the scheme, who describes the genesis of the program and its applicability to Scotland.