HC Deb 19 December 1980 vol 996 c327W
Mr. Maclennan

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will consider adding to the list of matters referable to children's panels apparently non-accidental injury or neglect; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Fairgrieve

Under section 32(2)(b) of the Social Work (Scotland) Act 1968 a child may be referred to a children's hearing if lack of parental care is likely to cause him unnecessary suffering or seriously impair his health or development. A consultative memorandum on the powers and procedures of children's hearings which was issued by the Scottish Education Department in April this year invited views on the suggestion that the grounds of referral should be extended to cover past instances of lack of parental care; and suggestions were invited about other means by which hearings could be given powers to deal with potential non-accidental injury to children. A considerable number of replies were received, and these are now under consideration.