Like ‘terrorism’, ‘child protection’ has long been used by control freak governments of all political persuasions as an emotive excuse to justify the abuse of citizens’ human rights and the breaching of data protection safeguards. The Children and Young People (Scotland) Act is one such example of Trojan Horse legislation, based on policy based ‘evidence’ and backed by Pinocchio PR. It was rushed through the Scottish Parliament by the present government because it suited vested interests and, despite being a New Labour construct, they are apparently “all in it together”.
The cheerleading children’s charities, shamelessly begging for a bigger slice of the taxpayer funded pie to guarantee their continuing preferential existence, were clearly far from impartial in their positive pronouncements on GIRFEC, as was Highland Council whose claims about the success of its pilot were overblown, if not completely false, like the alleged absence of parental complaints. Even Scotland’s Assistant Information Commissioner got in on the Act, misrepresenting the statutory principles he is paid to uphold by proffering guidelines which directly conflict with expert legal opinion. We are of course still waiting to see if the Scottish Government ever did obtain the legal advice it claims – it’s not as if it’s the first time doubt has been cast before a later admission that there was never any taken in the first place!
While lies about the history of GIRFEC and its application in practice may have fooled some of the people (including well meaning, wellbeing data stealing professionals) and no doubt helped to grease the wheels of public opinion in the short term (until the legislation could be forced through in faux child protection clothing), the government has now been declared guilty in the court of sentient parental opinion. A diverse coalition of interests has formed to oppose the data theft and Named Person sections of the CHYP Act which threaten every family in Scotland, and a legal challenge has been launched by the Christian Institute with backing from a number of non state beholden organisations, including Schoolhouse and the Scottish Parent Teacher Council. The collapse of this nasty nosy parker’s charter is inevitable sooner rather than later as parents withdraw their goodwill towards professionals, demand services to ensure their children’s ‘wellbeing’ on their own terms and/or make regular subject access requests to see how much of their family’s personal data has been stolen and shared unlawfully without informed consent. Having been publicly reassured by Aileen Campbell (with an apparently straight face) that engagement is not compulsory, all hellbeing will no doubt break loose if refuseniks experience victimisation as a result.
It is heartening for us as home educators, who were among the first to flag up GIRFEC as a surveillance scheme, to see some honest discussion and debate finally enter the mainstream media as its sinister purpose had been so carefully concealed for so long by wellbeing wonks who feared parents might find out what it really means: Getting Information Recorded For Every Citizen. Those in Highland and Perth and Kinross already have a pretty good idea of what has been going on in the guise of “enhancing their children’s wellbeing”, which is essentially SHANARRI (i.e. state) dictated and designed to undermine family autonomy and parental responsibility.
Another blow to the know-all wellbeing wonks (whose collective idea of ‘wellbeing’ appears to be to dump their own children in day care as early as possible so they can use taxpayers’ money to tell the rest of us how to run our lives) now appears to be heading in GIRFEC’s direction in the form of an interesting new ruling by the European Court of Justice, which suggests that the type of data theft being perpetrated by the Scottish Government’s army of Named Persons (i.e. state snoopers) may well breach EU law. Not that we didn’t already know that.
The Court takes the view that, by requiring the retention of those data and by allowing the competent national authorities to access those data, the directive interferes in a particularly serious manner with the fundamental rights to respect for private life and to the protection of personal data. Furthermore, the fact that data are retained and subsequently used without the subscriber or registered user being informed is likely to generate in the persons concerned a feeling that their private lives are the subject of constant surveillance.
FOG (Families Opposing GIRFEC) campaigners continue to work tirelessly on flag making workshops and leaflet drops to raise awareness of the Big Brother Scotland agenda which has been so slyly mis-sold to the general public, and plans are already in motion for a number of activities and events to demonstrate our displeasure at being dismissed as ‘mere parents’ who are evidently too stupid to understand what’s in the best interests of our own children and grandchildren. The fact that GIRFEC ‘s primary purpose as a data mining machine managed to fool most MSPs, who couldn’t be bothered to look beyond the spin and examine the real evidence (or else were complicit), paints a highly depressing picture of so called democracy in Scotland on this, the 694th anniversary of the Declaration of Arbroath, which
set the will and the wishes of the people above the King. Though they were bound to him ‘both by law and by his merits’ it was so that their freedom might be maintained. If he betrayed them he would be removed and replaced.
Popular sovereignty appears to have become universally unpopular with those who have presumed to pass legislation curtailing the fundamental freedoms of the sovereign people of Scotland. As our servants, they would do well to remember the lessons of medieval, as well as modern, European history.