Date lodged: 13 March 2019
To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to make the process for fostering and adoption easier and quicker.
Answered by: Maree Todd 27 March 2019
The Scottish Government is aware of the importance of making these processes easier and quicker where possible without detracting from the crucial safeguarding of children that these processes seek to ensure. The Scottish Government recognises that permanent, loving, nurturing relationships are what matter most to children, and that this is best delivered by giving them the legal certainty that their relationships are permanent. Since 2014 the Scottish Government has funded the Centre for Looked After Children (CELCIS) to deliver the Permanence and Care Excellence programme (PACE). PACE supports improvement projects in local authorities, designed to identify areas of blockages or difficulties in securing permanence for looked after children and to reduce delay where it is appropriate to do so. In line with the commitment in the Scottish Government’s Programme for Government 2018-19 all local authorities have now been offered support from the PACE programme .
Through the Children and Young People Act 2014, the Scottish Government has placed Scotland’s Adoption Register on a statutory footing. The Register provides opportunities for children to be matched with families across Scotland if they cannot be matched locally, and is now used by all local authorities to further reduce the delays in children being matched with adoptive families, and finding permanent homes.