The inclusion debate

The Scrutiny Group carefully evaluated the responses to each round of the consultation.

One debate centred on the omission of specific reference to disabled children. The majority of the respondents were happy to use the term all children and young people, while a small number felt that this would mean that disabled children might still be overlooked.

Playwork Principle 5 says: The role of the playworker is to support all children and young people in the creation of a space in which they can play.

The Scrutiny Group's rationale for supporting the majority view was that the Playwork Principles should be specifically about play and playwork. Children's rights and equal opportunities are covered in other documents and laws, for example the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), and the Disability Discrimination Act.

The Group noted that the UNCRC itself uses similar terminology. Article 1 states: For the purposes of the present Convention, a child means every human being below the age of eighteen years ...

Another element of the rationale was that to specifically mention disabled children would mean that every grouping of children who might potentially be disadvantaged or excluded ought also to be mentioned. To the Scrutiny Group, and the majority of the respondents, using the term all children and young people meant what it says and this was the most succinct and inclusive approach.