Police Scotland is helping to #KeepThePromise to care experienced children and young people
One year on from the completion of the Independent Care Review, when Scotland committed to #KeepThePromise to its children and families, Police Scotland is renewing its pledge to encourage and support care experienced young people to achieve their goals.
The Promise is responsible for driving the work of change demanded by the findings of the Independent Care Review, and outlines Scotland’s ambition for children and young people to grow up loved, safe and respected so their full potential can be realised.
Police Scotland is engaged with The Promise team and is looking forward to further work with them in the near futures, which will help develop the ways we, as an organisation, can support care experienced people.
We already have a significant focus on the rights of children and young people in our day to day work, and the organisation is in the process of updating its Corporate Parenting policy.
As part of that work, and to ensure the views of care experienced people are considered, the organisation has formed an Advisory Group bringing together partner organisations, including Who Cares? Scotland, a national voluntary organisation for people who are experienced, and which co-chairs the group.
The Advisory Group has met a number of times and is consolidating its key themes, which will be explored through ongoing partnership engagement. This will include hearing from care experienced people to ensure their concerns and priorities are included within our plan.
Police Scotland is also keen our workforce reflects the communities we serve, and that includes people with care experience. There is a misconception that someone who is care experienced can’t go on to be a police officer, member of police staff or volunteer – which isn’t the case.
We know that things we experience in our childhood can shape our futures, and even if those things haven’t all been positive, they can still benefit you in later life. Your lived experience can help you relate and connect to people you could encounter in your work if you become a police officer, staff member or volunteer.
Last year we reached out to ask serving officers and staff who are care experienced – either as children, through kinship care, fostering or adoption, or residential and secure care, or as adults involved with fostering or adoption – to come forward and form a short life working group.
12 colleagues have offered their support and their experiences and input will also help to shape our Corporate Parenting Plan, as well as work towards dispelling the perception that some careers are closed off to care experienced children and young people.