Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, all SCRA offices and Hearing centres remain closed.
Over the last few weeks, virtual Hearings have been taking place, but up until now it has only been possible for Panel Members and Reporters to take part. We wanted to test the technology before opening it up to more people joining.
This week and next, more children, young people and relevant persons are being offered the opportunity to join their Hearing virtually and securely. We will be testing and monitoring this closely and will be expanding on this every week to try to get as many children, young people and relevant persons as possible able to attend.
For children, young people and relevant persons attending a Hearing, they will receive a letter from the Children’s Reporter giving them more information about how they can participate via their tablet laptop/PC or mobile phone.
With the letter about the Hearing, they will also receive an information sheet which will explain how they can join a virtual Hearing.
The Virtual Hearings Team will then send instructions to help people with the set up. This will be followed by a test to make sure everyone is prepared for the day of the Hearing.
The information that is being sent to children, young people and relevant persons, includes top tips about virtual Hearings. It also provides information about rights and reminds children and young people that they have the right to have a trusted adult, an advocate or lawyer attend the virtual Hearing to provide support.
We know it might not be possible for every child, young person or relevant person to join their Hearing remotely. We are doing all we can to make this happen, but if children, young people and relevant persons cannot join their Hearing virtually, they can still provide their views. This can be done by emailing the information to the local team mailbox and the Reporter will then ensure this information is given to the Panel Members. This information is included in the letter sent to children, young people and relevant persons.
If you need to contact one of our local teams, please contact them via email. A list of email addresses is available here.