As a parent and former chair of Blairdardie Primary School Parent Council, Anne McTaggart MSP was delighted to contribute to the discussions on the importance of parenting, and welcome the Scottish Government’s eighteen million pound investment in a national parenting strategy.
John Mason MSP secured time in the chamber for the debate, and Ms McTaggart supported his view that fathers play an important role in the upbringing of children, and that the rights and responsibilities of fathers should not be underestimated. Mctaggart further acknowledged that the Scottish Government’s national parenting strategy seeks to pursue more ‘father friendly’ services and policies, so that dads can play active roles in the lives of children and can benefit from the same support services traditionally available only to mothers.
However, Ms McTaggart warned against any implication that families without fathers are deficient, or lack the necessary support structures to raise children in a safe and loving environment.
Anne McTaggart MSP said: “We know that many children have been brought up in single parent families, and that the absence of a father does not necessarily lead to less well-adjusted, healthy or successful young people as a consequence. Good parenting is about the commitment of a parent or parents to the well-being of their children, and is enhanced by access to well-funded support structures that enable mothers and fathers to provide financially for their families.
“Equally, we know that an increasing number of young people are raised in families with same-sex parents, and that these families are no less successful in providing the same loving and stable environment for their children than married heterosexual parents.”
Anne also praised Parent Network Scotland, a voluntary organisation based in Glasgow that provides training courses and support to parents in a non-judgmental and safe environment.
Ms McTaggart said: “I believe that the Scottish Governments Parenting Strategy should seek to recognise and build upon the work undertaken by the Parent Network Scotland and other organisations in supporting parents and building the capacity of mothers and father to raise healthy, talented and successful young people.”