It’s wishful thinking to suggest that Scotland is racism-free

THE Children’s Hearing had concluded, and I was typing up the decisions and reasons of the panel, when I heard a comment that made my ears prick up. My two panel colleagues – volunteers, like me – were talking about the ethnic group to which the family we’d just met belonged.

I paused, then kept typing. There was another family in the waiting room, another case to hear shortly, and no time for distractions from the task at hand. At least that’s what I told myself. While it was true that a tangential debate risked derailing the morning’s proceedings, I also just didn’t want to start one. We were a panel, a trio, a team. We were part of a small community of volunteers with a common goal: to make decisions in the best interests of children. It was much easier not to rock the boat.

Then I heard it, crystal clear and undeniable: “They move in packs”.

Read the rest of this column at

Published in The National on May 11 2018.

Published by Shona Craven

Writer, editor, talking head

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