19th Feb: SNP To Re-Define Family…

19th Feb: SNP To Re-Define Family…

Plans to assign every child in Scotland a state guardian could lead to good parents being penalised, an academic has warned ahead of a final vote on the issue in Holyrood later this month.  animated_baby_arms_100x100

Sociology lecturer Dr Stuart Waiton said the “secrecy” inbuilt in the SNP’s proposals – which would give children a ‘named person’ to monitor their progress – is a “cause for concern”.

“It will take very little to trigger an investigation into a child and from there a false picture can easily be arrived at”, he said.


He said innocent aspects of a child’s life such as what they eat or the views they express can make “good parents fair game” in the eyes of “health and safety zealots, obsessed with risk management”.

“It is incredible just how far the state is interfering in the lives of Scots”, he added.

A leading human rights lawyer has warned that under the Children and Young People (Scotland) Bill, a child’s named person – a state employee – would have powers that “cut across” the rights of their parents.


Aidan O’Neill QC said in a legal opinion that the scheme may not be compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights, which says the state should respect “private and family life”.

Mr O’Neill also described the Bill as “universal in scope” and said the “blanket” provisions allow the state to assign a guardian without assessing a child’s individual need.

He said it is “startling” that the proposal “appears to be predicated on the idea that the proper primary relationship that children will have for their well-being and development, nurturing and education is with the State rather than within their families and with their parents”, he added.


Under the Bill a named person would be able to share information with a wide range of public authorities and intervene without parental consent.

Currently, information can be shared without parental consent only if there is a danger of significant harm, but the Bill would enable data to be passed on to a named person without permission if there is a risk to a child’s “wellbeing”.

Nick Pickles, of campaign group Big Brother Watch, said: “This whole scheme is an unprecedented attack on the privacy of families and the civil liberties of law-abiding parents and children.”

The Children and Young People (Scotland) Bill reaches stage 3 in the Scottish Parliament on 19 February, when MSPs will vote on it for the final time.

Click on picture of Big Brother for source.

Click  here to read our original discussion on this topic


The Scottish Government has already shown its utter contempt for public opinion by re-defining marriage despite the manifest opposition of the majority of the people of Scotland. Is there any point in contacting MSPs to ask them to reject this latest assault on family life? Should we just roll over and accept that the primary relationship for families now is between the State and children? Or is there anything – anything at all – that we can do to prevent this legislation from being passed?

Comments (22)

  • leprechaun

    Madame Editor,

    You ask if there is anything we can do to prevent this legislation from being passed.

    With only 11 days in hand, probably very little. However, by voting against independence for Scotland, there is surely the possibility of that legislation being overthrown in the future by due process?

    In the meantime, we must all continue to pray for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

    February 8, 2014 at 9:16 am
    • editor


      I have already decided – following the contempt shown by the SNP and Scottish Parliament for the views of the people on an issue as fundamental and important as the definition of marriage – that I will be voting against independence. This latest shocker has only reinforced my decision. We already know that politicians north and south of the border treat the electorate with contempt, but why reward such blatant contempt for marriage and the family as that shown by the SNP by giving them what they want in the independence campaign. So, thanks for making that point.

      The fact that this measure is in its final stages without any mention at all in the Scottish press and broadcasting media (to the best of my knowledge – I’ve not heard a word about it on the TV/radio news or chat shows) speaks volumes about the secrecy of the SNP tactics, as stated in the Christian Institute article. This is downright evil, undisguised. Having seen the Panorama Special on the way parents have their babies removed from their homes and put up for adoption when they are more than likely innocent of the alleged abuse of those children, makes this new infringement of parental rights even more ominous.

      I don’t know whether to advise parents to kick up a fuss or, because, as you say, the measure is likely to go through now, to keep a low profile and play the game as best as they can. One thing is for sure: if I were a parent in Scotland after 19th February, I’d laugh heartily every time I heard it said: “we live in a free country…” Yeah right.

      I have now emailed Sky News, BBC News and Newsdrive, Radio Scotland with the link to this blog thread. It is amazing that this proposed legislation has not merited a mention in the broadcasting media outlets. Let’s see if it finds its way onto the air now. If not, it would seem that the secrecy cloak extends way beyond the SNP.

      February 8, 2014 at 9:58 am
  • Josephine

    This is really incredible that nobody is aware of this major change in Scottish law. I printed off the Christian Institute report and gave it to a friend who is going to copy it and spread it around at work next week. She said she had already decided not to vote for independence but that this report confirmed her decision and “completely ruled it out, now.” If the YES campaign wins, Scotland will definitely be a totalitarian state in no time. I truly believe that.

    February 8, 2014 at 10:18 pm
  • editor

    I am totally amazed that there are so few comments on this thread. Where are all the concerned parents?

    February 8, 2014 at 11:53 pm
  • Thomas

    I was not so amazed by the lack of comments on this thread until I noticed the number of comments left following the next story on the new bishop of Paisley.

    Catholics should be under no illusion regarding the importance of this story, which I was totally unaware of until reading this blog this morning.

    In the run up to the referendum we would do well to remember that behind the juvenile, flag waving, seemingly anodyne ‘patriotism’ of the Nationalist campaign lies the stark fact that these are socialists with a socialist agenda and that in voting out the Labour party the Scottish electorate simply replaced one set of socialists for another.

    With regard to this specific plan to appoint state guardians with the power to intervene between and , presumably, if deemed necessary, separate children from their parents, I quote the following:

    “Communism and socialism are inimical to the family and those organizations which function as intermediary structures between the state and the individual in society. Anyone who has experienced communism need not have such an obvious matter explained. The communists without hesitation separated children from their families, mercilessly indoctrinated them and made their choice of trade or work simply a matter for a communist bureaucrat to decide. They praised and rewarded children who had denounced their parents for deviating from the doctrine and dictates of the party. This is an illegitimate intrusion on the rights of parents. Catholic social doctrine has always held that the parents, not the state, are the primary educators of children.”

    Rev. Marcel Guarnizo

    In a state which clearly sets its face against Catholic beliefs and teaching, the consequences of a Catholic parent instructing his or her children in the faith and to then have that child articulate these beliefs publicly in a way which comes to the attention of a ‘state guardian’ must be all too obvious.

    Unfortunately the last people we can expect to mount a significant challenge to any of this are the Catholic Hierarchy.

    I was ambiguous with regard to the independence vote.

    Now my mind is settled.

    emphatically NO.

    February 9, 2014 at 1:37 pm
    • Catherine

      I am shocked and seriously concerned about this legislation on the 19th February 2014. I will not be voting for independence. I don’t think people will react until it starts to affect them personally. Many people don’t realise the effects on family life this bill will have. I pray about this all time.

      February 9, 2014 at 4:43 pm
      • editor


        “I don’t think people will react until it starts to affect them personally.”

        That’s it in a nutshell. You’re right. Once the State Guardians settle into their work of undermining parents (even more than is happening at the present time) then folk may begin to waken up.

        “I pray about this all the time”

        I presume you are a concerned parent – we should all join you in praying about this because it really is a very evil development.

        February 9, 2014 at 11:41 pm
      • Josephine


        I agree with you. That happened at the time of the Abortion Act. Catholics kept saying it couldn’t and wouldn’t happen and it did.

        I have no sympathy for parents who are taking the same attitude over this. Once it affects them, as you say, it will be a different story, and it will also be too late.

        February 12, 2014 at 5:33 pm
    • editor


      “Catholics should be under no illusion regarding the importance of this story…”

      Seems they are either under the illusion that it won’t happen or won’t matter, or they don’t care. I can’t make up my mind which, but as someone who is NOT a parent, I am outraged at the sheer nerve of the Scottish Government to re-define the family in this way and amazed at the apparent unconcern of many parents.

      I think there is a sense – after speaking to a couple of parents about it – that it just won’t happen or, if passed, it will be impossible to implement. But in the nature of things, if a law is passed giving more power to the political class in any sphere of life, there is every chance that someone in authority will invoke that law.

      I’m glad your mind is now made up Thomas, re. the independence vote – me, too. I look forward to going to the voting station to tell the SNP numpties parading outside with their plastic smiles, precisely WHY I am voting “NO” – then I’ll give my full attention and choicest English language vocabulary to the rest of the numpties, to the right, left and centre of the mish-mash they call “politics” in this fair land of ours.

      Peace ❗

      February 9, 2014 at 11:36 pm
  • Margaret Mary

    There is no way now that I will be voting for independence. Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon are blatant about their contempt for the electorate. I’ve been listening to all the debates and weighing up the arguments for and against independence. This has been the clincher. No way am I voting YES now.

    February 9, 2014 at 6:58 pm
  • Nicky

    I’ve no time for the Scottish Government since same=sex marriage was legalised. I decided then I wouldn’t be voting for independence and this has merely sealed my decision.

    I hope there are parents groups who are making their presence felt at Holyrood.

    February 9, 2014 at 7:07 pm
  • Frankier

    I wonder who is going to monitor these `named persons` And then who will monitor the monitors?

    I would assume that they won’t all be above reproach. In fact, an ideal job for a paedophile.

    February 10, 2014 at 1:48 pm
  • Theresa Rose

    This is a recent newspaper report on SNP legislation about state guardianship for all children in Scotland until they are 18 years old. It does mention that it is a flawed piece of work.

    Too true Frankier, who will monitor these ‘named persons’, and who WILL monitor the monitors?


    I will not be voting for independence either.

    February 10, 2014 at 4:46 pm
    • Frankier

      Therese Rose

      Neither will I vote for an independent Scotland run by the masonic societies.

      I don’t know what Salmonds and his bigoted cronies will do with the empty shops, flattened industrial sites, open-cast coal sites that they don’t have the cash to re-instate and the roads like dirt tracks if they ever get the keys of the Gretna Smiddy.

      February 11, 2014 at 10:18 am
  • Margaret Mary

    The headline in the Scottish Daily Mail today is about this topic but I couldn’t find it online just now when I tried to get it to post here. I think this is an update from the Christian Institute which mentions the Daily Mail article. I wonder why it’s not online?

    February 10, 2014 at 5:30 pm
    • bededog

      Margaret Mary,
      That’s a very good article in the Christian Institute. It explains the issue very well to a non-Scots person.

      February 10, 2014 at 10:51 pm
  • editor

    Last night, STV’s Scotland Today programme began with coverage of this issue. A man from Barnardo’s argued in favour of the named individual for every child and a Conservative MSP argued against, asking how – given the sheer numbers involved – a named adult representing the State could be appointed for every child in Scotland. She was very good but, as a friend said to me on the phone after listening to the man from Barnado’s “thank goodness I’m not an orphan.”

    It was amazing listening to him offer ridiculous arguments such as the fact that he had problems getting the necessary extra support needed for one of his own (four) children (presumably at school) so this would be a way of ending such difficulties – with absolutely no thought as to the implications and the way this legislation will be used to undermine parents in the raising of their offspring. Lenin’s description of the “useful idiots” who helped the cause of Communism not realising that it militates against their own best interests, came to mind.


    Note that all “non-Scots persons” are very welcome here ❗

    February 11, 2014 at 10:46 am
    • Josephine

      The front page story in today’s Herald Scotland is about this. The Kirk has taken the lead.

      February 12, 2014 at 5:34 pm
      • editor


        I’ve been on the Herald site commenting on the naïve acceptance of certain Herald bloggers who see no harm in this planned legislation. To my astonishment, all of my comments passed the moderation process. Wonders will never cease!
        Click here to read the Herald Scotland report & blog

        February 12, 2014 at 7:19 pm
  • Marie-Esther

    I read the Herald article late last night and could not believe the number of people who thought this was a good thing. It’s no wonder governments get away with doing the most incredible things, taking away our civil and parental rights, when people just lie down and take it or wait for somebody else to take action, like the man at the Herald who blogged asking if someone would start a petition. I wonder it didn’t occur to him to start a petition. It’s a true saying that most people are followers, not leaders.

    February 13, 2014 at 10:11 am
  • editor

    The legislation was passed yesterday at Holyrood. It may be challenged in the courts, though, according to this Herald report.

    One good thing is that, just before posting this, I read the blog comments underneath the above article and all but one were from wide-awake people who realise that this is very dangerous legislation. Only one, with the title “Dr” thinks it is perfectly OK. One of life’s useful idiots. Odd how many of them are allegedly educated people. One is tempted to point out that having a degree and being “educated” are two entirely different things.

    February 20, 2014 at 10:25 am
  • Josephine

    Colin Hart of the Christian institute was interviewed on Radio Scotland this morning and you can hear it for the next six days, it starts at 54 minutes. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03trxd1

    He did say that the named person could advise young person (against the parents) but I was disappointed that he didn’t give some concrete examples.

    February 20, 2014 at 10:03 pm

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