New research – exploring the impact of virtual Hearings on participation, rights and decision making

New research – exploring the impact of virtual Hearings on participation, rights and decision making

Stand Up For Siblings partner SCRA has embarked on a new piece of research which will explore the impact of virtual Hearings during the COVID-19 pandemic on participation, rights and decision making.

The research includes an online survey aimed at foster carers and kinships carers.

The survey is open for six weeks, closing on Sunday 20 March. The survey will measure foster and kinship carers views about participating in virtual Hearings. It will also ask them about the perceived impacts of virtual Hearings on the children in their care and explore barriers to participation such as digital exclusion. Interviews with foster and kinship carers may also be undertaken.

Dr Catherine Nixon from SCRA who is leading the research explained: “The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 significantly restricted the delivery of Children’s Hearings in Scotland. Although the rapid development and subsequent refinement of virtual Hearings has allowed SCRA to continue to meet the needs of children, little is known about the long-term acceptability of virtual Hearings to children, families and their caregivers.

“The Keeping The Promise 2021-2024 strategy developed by SCRA commits to undertaking research in order to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and to use the knowledge gathered to inform our improvement journey. Understanding how virtual and hybrid Hearings have impacted upon the participation and rights of children and families, as well as the decision making process, is part of that commitment.”

The research, which has been developed in consultation with young people from Our Hearings, Our Voice includes a number of other strands:

  • Interviews and focus groups will be conducted with parents, residential carers and secure care staff about their views of participating in virtual Hearings. These interviews will aim to understand how attending Hearings virtually differs from the experience of face-to-face participation. They will also explore perceptions about the impact of virtual Hearings on decision making, rights and participation.

 

  • Participatory research will be undertaken with children and young people to explore their views on Virtual Hearings. This research will explore the same issues that will be explored with parents and carers, but will adopt a child-centred and child-led approach to data collection. Our Hearings, Our Voice Board Members will act as co-researchers in this element of the study.

 

  • Case File Analysis using data routinely being collected by SCRA in relation to Children’s Hearings will be undertaken to explore the inclusion of the child’s voice within Hearings held during the pandemic. Data on the decision making process will also be recorded, including the effect of Hearing type on rates of continuations, deferrals, appeals and requests for early reviews of decisions. Face-to-face Hearings will be compared with virtual Hearings conducted with and without RAVHI.

The intention is to publish the findings from each research element as soon as they become available as the findings will be used to inform future refinements of virtual Hearings. All findings should be available in early 2023 on SCRA’s website.

Marking the ICR second anniversary

Marking the ICR second anniversary

Stand Up For Siblings is proud to support The Promise Scotland mark the second anniversary of the publication of the Independent Care Review (ICR) on Saturday 5 February 2022.

We have worked with the ICR and The Promise to continue to promote the voices of children and young people with regard to maintaining relationships between brothers and sisters.

We contributed to the changes in legislation and celebrated the new duties within the Children (Scotland) Act 2020 and we continue to actively raise awareness and promote good practice in Scotland. 

New documentary on siblings in care

New documentary on siblings in care

STAR, Siblings Reunited features in a new documentary being aired by the BBC. The Scottish charity which helps separated siblings, was asked to star in the programme ‘Split up in care’. The documentary features BBC reporter Ashley John-Baptiste who grew up in care. Ashley spoke to Karen Morrison from STAR for the programme. You can watch the programme on the BBC iPlayer and you can also read an interview with John on the BBC website.

 

Caring for Your Sibling

Caring for Your Sibling

We know there’s lots of people caring for their siblings. Stand Up For Siblings has created a new section on our website for sibling carers. The new section provides information about supports, including financial, practical and emotional supports. It also contains links to organisations who can help you.

If you have any relevant supports or resources you would like to share on this section, then please get in touch.

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