NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE
We have received a response from the Children’s Commissioner for Scotland following our query about safeguards in relation to the military cadet forces.
Celtic News readers will recall we raised further concerns about cadet forces with Children’s Commissioners in Scotland, Wales and N. Ireland following revelations that millions of pounds had been paid by the MOD to settle claims out of Court.
The most positive response was from the Office of the Commissioner in Scotland who raised the issue with the MOD (this is set out in full below):
“Dear Mr Moffat,
We have now received a reply to our letter from the Ministry of Defence, who sponsor and support the Combined Cadet Force, Sea Cadet Corps, Army Cadet Force and the Air Training Corps.
The Joint Services Publication (JSP) 814 – Policy and Regulations for the Ministry of Defence Sponsored Cadet Forces’ refers to the UNCRC and the optional protocol.
In regard to recruitment, the MOD says that their obligation as regards minimum age for recruitment under the Optional Protocol is to ensure that MOD supported cadet forces are not a vehicle for directly recruiting people under the age of 15 in the armed forces or a way of subverting the minimum joining age or a way of applying pressure on members of the cadets under 18 years to join. They are required to maintain safeguards to ensure that does not occur.
In regard to monitoring the rights, welfare and safety of cadets in Scotland, the MOD writes that each of the MOD sponsored cadet forces employs a Safeguarding Officer and has a safeguarding policy in place requiring all adult instructors to receive initial and continuing training in safeguarding. Adult volunteers are subject to enhanced disclosure and barring list checks. All adult volunteers are also ‘made fully aware of their responsibility to protect children from the differing forms of harassment, physical and mental and mental intimidation and discrimination, and any suspicion of bullying must be dealt with immediately’.
I hope you will find this information of interest and thank you for contacting the office.
Linda Ellis Macdonald
Scotland ‘s Commissioner for Children and Young People
9 Haymarket Terrace
The Celtic League wish to thank the Office of the Commissioner for this response.
J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
(Please note that replies to correspondence received by the League and posted on CL News are usually scanned hard copies. Obviously every effort is made to ensure the scanning process is accurate but sometimes errors do occur.)
ISSUED BY THE CELTIC LEAGUE INFORMATION SERVICE.
The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, monitors all military activity and focuses on socio-economic issues
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