Child Protection Guidance 2021

Part 4: Specific support needs and concerns 208 National Guidance for Child Protection in Scotland 2021 Version 1.0 September 2021 4.459 As with all inter-agency assessment and action, a sensitive, collaborative, respectful approach is essential at every stage, with sharp attention to the necessary sharing of information and preservation of evidence. All inter-agency professionals should ensure that the family involved in the process are treated sensitively. Scottish Government have provided funding to develop National Bereavement Care Pathways (NBCP) for five types of baby loss including the sudden unexpected death of an infant. Chief Officers will ensure that staff have access to appropriate support during any investigations, particularly if the circumstances of the case lead to a significant case review. Resources and References – Sudden unexpected child death Community 4.460 Article 2 of the UNCRC requires that each child’s rights are protected without discrimination of any kind, irrespective of the child’s or his or her parent’s or legal guardian’s race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national, ethnic or social origin, property, disability, birth or other status. While child protection must be non-discriminatory it should also be sensitive to the significance of context, culture and community in each situation. 4.461 The sections that follow indicate considerations in relation to ‘community’. The term community is used in a broad sense to encompass not only relationships that are connected to place, but also those that arise out of shared beliefs and values or common goals. Although this Guidance promotes consistent components of good practice across Scotland, effective child protection will require respect for distinctive elements of communities that influence not only the ecology of the child’s world, but also, potentially, the ecology of professional judgement – for example in a small rural community in which personal and professional boundaries may intersect more frequently. Cultural and faith communities 4.462 All faith organisations and cultural communities in Scotland share a commitment to the safety and protection of children. 4.463 Increasing diversity. Scotland’s population of 5,438,100 (2018) is increasingly diverse in culture, faith and language. After English, Polish, Urdu, Scots, Punjabi and Arabic are most frequently spoken. In 2017, 158 languages were spoken as the main home language by pupils in publicly funded schools. The 2011 census asked those living in Scotland to state their religious affiliations. 32% said Church of Scotland; 37% said no religion; 16% said Roman Catholic; 1.4% said Islam; and around 0.1% said each of Buddhism, Sikhism, Judaism, and Hinduism. 4.464 Cultural sensitivity and competence. Cultural respect must be a consistent thread through child care and protection. Competence in an unfamiliar cultural context may entail consultation about specific culture and/or faith by which the child and family live their daily life. It will involve development awareness of services that provide advocacy, advice and support attuned to culture and faith. 4.465 Children’s safety first. Working across differences in culture and faith can influence professional response in child protection processes. For example, fear of being thought racist and unsympathetic can lead to professional inaction (Lord Laming, 2003; Victoria Climbie Inquiry; para 16.7).