Social Justice, The Common Weal and Children and Young People in Scotland (2014)


This paper argues that Scotland should organise itself around social justice, which addresses entitlements, redistribution, recognition and respect. Children should be a part of that on theirs on own terms. The combination of piecemeal incorporation of children’s rights, an apolitical wellbeing framework and a lack of strong legislation to hold local authorities and other public services, private sector organisations and the third sector to account, results in children and young people encountering discrimination on an everyday basis.

To achieve social justice, a change is needed in how adults perceive children and childhood, young people and youth. Children and young people need to be recognised as contributors to their families, institutions and communities now – and not just in the future. This involves considering the structucal, cultural and economics barriers children face.



Prof John Davis, Dr Louise Hill, Prof Kay Tisdall, Liam Cairns and Selwyn McCausland