CAMPAIGNERS have called for an independent public inquiry into the human rights impact of Scottish ministers’ data-sharing policies.

They say the Scottish Government’s Getting It Right For Every Child (GIRFEC) policy and early implementation of its named person scheme have led to unlawful data collection and a loss of trust in services among families.

Lesley Scott of Tymes Trust, a charity for children with ME, and Alison Preuss of the Scottish Home Education Forum, submitted a petition to the Scottish Parliament highlighting issues with the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014, which legislates for the named person regime as part of the GIRFEC approach.

The scheme would see a single point of contact, such as a teacher or health visitor, appointed to look out for the welfare of all children.

Scottish ministers were forced to make changes to the information sharing provisions of the 2014 Act after the UK Supreme Court ruled elements of the policy were “incompatible” with human rights laws.

Further legislation aimed at resolving the issue has been delayed.

Despite the court ruling and the delay, petitioners said the Government continues to encourage health boards and councils to prepare for implementation.

The named person scheme has already been trialled in some parts of the country, including the Highlands.

Scott told Holyrood’s Petitions Committee: “Tymes Trust has seen an escalation in calls to our advice line over families being referred and situations escalated to child protection services.

“Of over 200 families facing such a situation who have contacted us, not one has found to have been at fault on further investigation.”

Preuss said background checks on home educating families with “absolutely no legal basis” had found their way into local policies, with parents having their health, social work and police records accessed without their knowledge.

The campaigners said that many parents had been unaware of the named person scheme being introduced, while many of those who made complaints were ignored.

Government minutes from a meeting show “it was rolled-out purposefully quietly so it could be implemented before families were told about it”, they said.