Advocacy for Children and Young People Making a Complaint


This chapter was reviewed and hyperlinks and contact details were updated in this chapter in September 2017.

1. Statutory Framework

The Adoption and Children Act 2002 amended the Children Act 1989 and introduced obligations to provide advocates for children and young people who wish to make a complaint under s24 or s26 of the Children Act.

The Advocacy Services and Representations Procedure (Children) (Amendment) Regulations 2004 came into force on 1st April 2004.

These Regulations require local authorities to provide advocacy services for children and young people making or intending to make a complaint under s24D or s26 of the Children Act 1989.

Alongside these Regulations the Government published guidance entitled Providing Effective Advocacy Services for Children and Young People Making a Complaint under the Children Act 1989.

In November 2002, the Government published the National Minimum Standards for the Provision of Children's Advocacy Services. (See Annex A of the above guidance).

These set out the standards for the commissioning and delivery of advocacy services. Staff should refer to the above documents for further guidance.

2. Advocacy Services in Hertfordshire

It is important that children who are looked after have access to an advocate if they need or require this and that they are enabled to make complaints and representation should they wish to do so.

All children must be given a copy of the current relevant Complaint Leaflet by their Social Worker when they become looked after but a child may choose someone else as an advocate if s/he wishes to do so.

The NYAS Advocacy Service is available to all Children Looked After and young people up to the age of 21. There is no cost to the child or young person.

They can be contacted via the free phone number 0300 3303131 or alternatively can be contacted at

The NYAS Advocacy Service is the current commissioned service for Hertfordshire County Council and the contract for the service is managed by the Manager of the Independent Review Team with support from Brokerage.