There’s a lot of laws and regulation governing the rights and entitlements of care-experienced young people, and you might find it tricky to make sense of all the information available. To put things simply, there are some straightforward and essential human rights you have, that you need to know:

  • You have the right to be treated equally and without discrimination, regardless of your race, gender identity, sexuality, the language you speak, your opinions or your family background.
  • You have the right for all adults, carers and organisations involved in your care to act in your best interests, and to put your best interests first when making important decisions that affect your life.
  • You have the right to be listened to, and to have a say about what you want and need in any of the processes of care that affect you.
  • You have the right to an education, and you also have the right to relax and have fun in the way that you want to: by playing music, enjoying sports, watching a movie or whatever else you enjoy doing.
  • You have the right to be helped to recover if you’ve been treated badly.

These rights are enshrined in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and they are rights held by all children in the world, no matter where they happen to live.

We will always put your rights as a young person first. With Kibble, you’ll be fully involved in creating your own clear, easy to understand care plan. You can view a guide to your rights in pictures on the website of the Children & Young People’s Commissioner for Scotland.

As a care-experienced young person, access to entitlements and benefits like jobseekers allowance and housing benefit can be quite different to that of other young people. It’s a complex system, and knowing what you’re entitled to can be difficult. Your keyworker and staff at Kibble are there to help you navigate the more daunting aspects of this, and there are many organisations such as Become who can offer advice and guidance.

If you think that you’re not getting what you’re entitled to or that your human rights as a young person aren’t being respected, Who Cares Scotland can offer advice and advocate for you (support you and speak on your behalf), if you don’t feel confident about speaking up yourself. To find out more about how Who Cares Scotland can help you understand your rights visit the Who Cares Scotland website.

The Young Scot Lawline offers free, confidential legal advice to young people between the ages of 11-25. They can help with issues relating to criminal law, debt, renting a home and welfare, among many other things. You can call them for free on 0800 801 0801.

Like the Young Scot Lawline, the Scottish Child Law Centre offers free legal advice for young people. Their lines are open Monday to Friday between 9.30am and 4pm. You can call them on 0131 667 6333 or email advice@sclc.org.uk.