You can get help to speak up...

International and national law says that what you think matters, and that the County Council has to take what you think and say seriously. If you're going through the Child Protection process, or are about to attend an Initial Child Protection Conference then you can receive some help and support from Catriona, the Children's Rights Officer, if you want it.

It's the Children's Rights Officer's job to tell everyone what you think or to help you tell them yourself. You can get support to attend conferences and get help with raising issues or making complaints.

Who can get support?

You, if you are

  • 10 years +
  • subject to a child protection plan


  • have been told that an initial (1st) child protection conference is going to be held about you.

If you're not sure about whether you're subject to a Child Protection Plan or not, ask your parents/carers or your social worker.

How does it work?

The Children's Rights Officer (CRO) will meet with you before your Child Protection Conference to talk about what your thoughts, wishes and feelings are and what you want to say to the meeting. She will write what you say down and ask which bits you want to be talked about in the meeting, you can check what she has written down to make sure it's right.

If you are going to the meeting the CRO can support you in the meeting. She will bring the notes that she wrote down when you met, and you will have a chance to check that they're right. You can either speak for yourself in the meeting, or the CRO can speak for you if that's what you want.

If you're not going to the meeting, the CRO can go to represent you, if you want that, and/or send the notes of what your thoughts, wishes and feelings are to the chair. After the meeting the CRO will meet to talk with you about what happened, and to check that you're happy with it. If you're not, the CRO can help you to challenge it and complain.

Contact Catriona

Catriona Candler

Catriona Candler

Children's Rights Officer (Child Protection)

Heya! I'm Catriona, and I'm the Children's Rights Officer for children and young people who are on a Child Protection Plan. That means that I help young people to have their say about their plan and try to make sure that everyone listens.

0116 3055136/ 07909893541