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Shaping the future in Northern Ireland

Kathleen Toner, director of The Fostering Network in Northern Ireland, outlines our role in shaping the proposed new children’s legislation in Northern Ireland and the merits of updating the law

Children and Social Work Bill

We believe the Bill provides an opportunity to improve outcomes for looked after children, but we are concerned that it has been introduced in the absence of a wider strategy on children in care.

We have a number of concerns about the Bill as it currently stands, in particular:

Fostering legislation in Wales

With the evolution of Welsh Government legislative powers, there is currently no single source or site providing a comprehensive collection of all current UK and Welsh legislation.  There are three key sites to consult.

Care Council for Wales – a comprehensive range of ‘child law’.

Cardiff University Law School  – launched in 2015 and maintained by Julie Doughty, Cardiff University Law School, on child law relating to Wales.

Fostering legislation in Scotland

The Children’s Hearings System

The Children’s Hearings System is the care and justice system for Scotland’s children and young people up until the age of 16 (for some children, until 18). Children and young people are referred to the children’s reporter because some aspect of their life is causing concern. This could be for a variety of reasons, including not attending school or committing offences, but it is generally because there are significant concerns about the child’s safety, health and welfare.

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