News'Reimagining justice' to build rights-respecting services

For World Children's Day, the Children and Young People's Centre for Justice (CYCJ) has launched a new initiative that will support the design of rights-based services for and with children and young people on the cusp of or in conflict with the law.

'Reimagining Justice with Children and Young People: Building Rights Respecting Services Together' is a service design approach based on the best available evidence about how to respect and uphold children's rights, and deliver on The Promise to Scotland's care experienced community.

'Reimagining Justice' will place those who use the services (including children and young people) at the heart of the design process, working alongside practitioners and managers. It is available to all organisations and local authorities. 

The approach was also developed in response to recommendations made by CYCJ's 2019 independent evaluation, which emphasised the benefits of CYCJ expanding its support to help services and local authorities reflect on service provision, and to design and deliver change.

Fiona Dyer, Director of CYCJ, said:

"Recently we have seen significant and encouraging changes in Scotland that will impact on children and young people, including a commitment to The Promise and incorporation of United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). CYCJ recognises the significant changes that alignment with the outcomes of The Promise and the UNCRC, and subsequently developing a rights-upholding approach to children in conflict with the law, will require. We are also aware of our obligation as a 'boundary-spanning' organisation to do more to support managers with service design and delivery.

"Perhaps most importantly, 'Reimagining Justice' is about more than CYCJ identifying what needs to change and then presenting these changes to service users. Rather, we are combining the views, opinions, knowledge and experiences of everyone involved to create a full understanding of what will be effective, meaningful, and sustainable for all."

Using a model that is grounded in the 7 principles of the Scottish Approach to Service Design (SAtSD), CYCJ will work closely with organisations and local authorities, and those who use the services, throughout the three-phase process. This will include questionnaires and workshops which can be facilitated by CYCJ virtually and/or in person.

Phase 1 (Discovery and Define) is available for free and and will help you to include the views of children, young people and their families from the beginning, alongside the workforce, to understand where developments and improvements could be most impactful and achievable. 

Should the organisation wish to progress, Phase 2 (Develop and Deliver); and Phase 3 (Evaluation) are available at a cost; however, these are also optional. 'Reimagining Justice' is a flexible approach, with participants encouraged to access it in a way that works best for their needs.

'Reimagining Justice' will also support connectedness across other policy and practice frameworks such as the Secure Care Pathways and Standards Scotland, The Promise, UNCRC, Standards for those working with children and young people in conflict with the law and associated guidance and frameworks such as FRAME for 12-17 years, EEI Core Elements, National Guidance for Diversion and the developing refresh of GIRFEC.

Fiona concludes:

"We hope that 'Reimagining Justice' will offer an opportunity for reflection and evaluation at a time of significant change across policy, legislation, and practice. It will enable organisations to identify and align the needs of those children and young people on the cusp of or in conflict with the law with the organisations delivering services to improve outcomes for all."

Find out more. If you are interested in undertaking a 'Reimagining Justice' approach, please email or call her on 07964912079 for more information.