Your chance to Demand that the Deputy First Minister listen to parents
The Deputy First Minister John Swinney told a Holyrood Committee yesterday that his ‘public consultation’ on Named Persons would NOT involve speaking to NO2NP, but only with those who support Named Persons.
Having told Parliament last week that he would engage with parents, including “those who have concerns” about the policy, he has now announced that he will only talk to people who basically agree with him.
He admitted again that the public have lost confidence in the scheme. But he refuses to do the only thing that has any hope of earning confidence, which is to listen to – and act on – the concerns of the very parents who are most affected by his policy. Parents whose concerns were recently vindicated by the Supreme Court.
That Supreme Court action – brought by parents and groups involved in NO2NP – has ripped the heart out of the Named Person scheme. The ruling means Named Persons will NOT be able to grab and share your private information in the way Mr Swinney wanted. And they CANNOT browbeat parents into thinking they have to obey Named Person advice.
But the Government says it is determined to roll out some form of Named Person. Even though it will be much less powerful than the original, it still has scope to hinder, not help, children and families. So ministers must listen to concerns.
And the Government has yet to properly answer questions about illegal sharing of private family information that we believe has been taking place across Scotland under the guise of preparing for the Named Person rollout.
Email the Deputy First Minister today and politely ask him to listen to people who disagree with him:
Ask him to host PUBLIC meetings where EVERYONE, including parents who disagree with his policy, can ask him questions.
If his “three-month period of intense engagement” is to have any meaning, it must include listening to people with opinions different to his own.
Email him today and ask him:
“Mr Swinney – will you host public meetings across Scotland where parents can question you about the Named Person scheme?”
Send a copy of your email and any replies you receive to firstname.lastname@example.org.
My email to Mr Swinney