New child protection guidance for those working with disabled children and young people has been launched by the Scottish Government.
It follows requests from professionals for greater guidance on how to deal with early intervention when issues of child protection arise.
The Child Protection and Disability Toolkit has been developed by the Government’s Ministerial Working Group on Child Protection and Disability and WithScotland, the organisation which supports professionals working with children and adults at risk of harm and abuse.
It includes guidance on investigating and referring child protection concerns, case studies, interviews with parents of disabled children and links to training resources.
Children’s minister Aileen Campbell said: “We know that the vast majority of families affected by disability provide safe and positive environments for children to grow up in.
“However, research has shown that disabled children are more likely to suffer abuse and that it is more likely to go undetected or unreported.
“We have listened to professionals who have said that identifying signs of abuse can be very challenging when working with disabled young people, particularly when there are communication difficulties.”