About the Lifelong Rights Campaign
For the past 45 years, Who Cares? Scotland has endeavoured to be at the heart of the Care Experienced community in Scotland.
Because when we ensure everyone in our community has access to the support they need, when they need it, everyone benefits.
However, our learning from our work since we were founded by a group of social workers and Care Experienced people in 1978, tells us that Care Experienced people, from birth to old age, continue to have their rights diluted, infringed, or disregarded altogether.
Our commitment to recording and evidencing what we hear from Care Experienced people reinforces the limited national data available, which shows that Care Experienced people currently do not have the same life outcomes as their non Care Experienced peers.
As a result:
The Promise states:
Scotland’s parenting responsibilities are lifelong and holistic for the young people that Scotland has cared for.
Older Care Experienced people must have a right to access to supportive, caring services for as long as they require them.
However, we hear from the Care Experienced community through participation and advocacy evidence, including our National Advocacy Helpline, that Care Experienced adults are being left to struggle and are still facing stark inequalities in areas including health, socio-economic deprivation, education and employment and housing.
What We Heard
Throughout the summer of 2023, we surveyed over 200 Care Experienced people across Scotland. We heard from them on several issues and found that:
Our Calls for Change
Change is not just necessary, but very possible, and within reach with a different approach. To achieve equality with their non-Care Experienced peers, we have identified two campaign calls. These are:
Extra protection for Care Experienced people of all ages to access their rights.
Rights for Care Experienced people must be laid out in policy and legislation to address the additional barriers they face. Support to realise their rights must be available from the cradle to the grave. When these rights are not being met, there needs to be simple and accessible routes to justice to ensure they are upheld.
Independent, relationship-based, lifelong advocacy for every Care Experienced person in Scotland who needs it.
Everyone experiences different hardships and struggles throughout their lifetime. During these tough times, people typically rely on different support networks. If they’re having issues at work they could work with a trade union, if they need some support with legal issues they can access a lawyer. In some circumstances, family and friends can also help provide emotional support and help people have their voices heard.
For Care Experienced people, there are often many voices that surround them, such as social workers, carers and service providers, all with their own interests. For Care Experienced adults, the stigma of explaining their circumstances can hinder their confidence and voice. Everyone in our community must have the support they need to navigate life, when the rising tide of poverty, stress and other aggravating factors can set them adrift. Independent advocates can provide that support by helping make sure Care Experienced people are informed of their options, rights and ensuring they have their voices heard.
Read our Report
Who Cares? Scotland is proud to publish this report to launch our new campaign for Lifelong Rights for Care Experienced people. This campaign aims to ensure that Care Experienced people of all ages can get the support they need for as long as they need it.
Show Your Support:
You can show your support for Care Experienced people of all ages by filling in your details and clicking our pledge button. Please also download the below graphics and echo our calls on social media. Together, we can drive forward the necessary change to support every member of our community. By clicking the pledge button, you confirm you are over 12 and have read and understood the Who Cares? Scotland Privacy Notice.
We will only use your data to contact you about future developments relating to the campaign.
Social Media Graphics
Whether you’re an individual or an organisation, you can download one of our graphics to show your support for the Lifelong Rights Campaign on your social media platforms.