MSP pledges to monitor progress after poor Care Inspectorate report

A MEETING TO discuss measures being taken to address the recent damning Care Inspectorate report on services for children and young people in Moray was held on Friday.

Called by regional MSP and local councillor Douglas Ross, the meeting included the Chief Officer Group chair Susan Webb, Moray Council’s Chief Executive Roddy Burns and Chief Superintendent Campbell Thomson from Police Scotland.

Mr Ross had sought an opportunity to meet with the group as soon as possible after a report that shed a poor light on the way Moray had handled childcare services. The report said that some children and young people experiencing emotional harm or neglectful parenting had waited too long before decisive action to reduce risk to them was taken.

It added that those experiencing neglectful parenting and cumulative harm are exposed to risk for too long before decisive action is taken – and that the circumstances of some children only improved when their situation reached crisis point.

Mr Ross said after the meeting last week: “I welcomed the opportunity to meet with the chief officers group so quickly after the publication of the report to discuss the findings and importantly the improvement plan and the way forward.

“You can’t ignore the criticisms in the report but I am encouraged by the feedback I received and also the dialogue chief officers in Moray will have with their counterparts in Dumfries and Galloway who have faced similar challenges.

“While there were positives in the report, the Inspectorate and local people expect improvements to be implemented very quickly. It’s clear there is a plan of action and leadership from the chief officers group and I want to support them in their efforts to ensure that at the follow-up inspection in six months, and in the future, it can be clearly demonstrated that significant improvements have taken place.

“I have arranged to meet the chief officers again in three months’ time to discuss the progress being made to address the failings identified in the report.”