Sturgeon rejects call to scrap named person scheme 

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson claims the policy is 'in tatters'.

Nicola Sturgeon: The First Minister said the scheme is in the best interests of children. © HEMEDIA / SWNS Group

The First Minister has vowed to stand by her government's named person scheme despite calls for it to be scrapped by Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson.

Davidson said the policy is "in tatters" after a majority of MSPs on Holyrood's education committee delayed publishing a report on the legislation needed for the scheme to be introduced.

The committee voted to delay the legislation until it is given a draft code of practice by the Scottish Government.

The education secretary has previously said this will not be available until September next year.

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It is the latest setback for the scheme, in which every child would be assigned given a named person, usually a teacher or health visitor, for their protection.

The Supreme Court ruled last year the information-sharing provisions included in the original legislation was unlawful as it did not comply the European Convention on Human Rights.

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The Scottish Conservative leader branded the policy a "mess" at First Minister's Questions on Thursday.

Davidson said: "We should focus resources on those who actually need it rather than having blanket interference for every family in Scotland.

"We are willing to get round the table to find a fresh solution to this but first the First Minister needs to ditch this broken plan, because her named person policy in tatters.

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"Can she simply concede that so we can all move on?"

Sturgeon replied: "The Scottish Government will proceed with its named person plans for the simple reason that they are in the best interests of children, particularly vulnerable children, across the country."

The First Minister said she was "disappointed" with the committee's decision and said it was an "unnecessary" to delay proceedings

She added: "It is about the protection of children, this bill is not about the principle of named person, it's about the information sharing that is necessary to ensure vulnerable children don't fall through the gaps in services.

"If this is about the protection of children rather than political point-scoring, then I think that's the way all of us should be determined to proceed."

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