Meeting with South Ayrshire Youth Forum and Key Decision Makers

Speak Up! Help shape your local area.

Check out the minutes from a meeting between South Ayrshire Youth Forum and Key Decision Makers.

When: Monday 12th of August at 2pm

Where: Domain Youth Centre, Glenmuir Place, Ayr, KA8 9RP


  • Welcome and Check In
  • Introductions
  • The role of SAYF
  • Top questions from Survey; Speak Up!
  • AOCB
  • Check out


  • Eileen Howat – Chief Executive of South Ayrshire Council
  • John Burns - Chief Executive NHS Ayrshire & Arran
  • Mark Hargreaves - Divisional Commander Police Scotland
  • Councillor Peter Henderson – Girvan and Carrick South
  • Jamie Tait – CLD Co-ordinator
  • Lynn Dillon – Youth Strategy Officer
  • Brian Borland – Community Learning Assistant
  • Bonnie Buchanan – Trainee Modern Apprentice
  • Jessica Hartshorn – Chair of SAYF
  • Georgia Lewis – SAYF member
  • Curtis Mclean-Daly – SAYF member/MSYP
  • Callum McKenzie – SAYF member

Speak Up! Survey Questions... Answered

Mental Health and Wellbeing

How do you effectively communicate to young people on what you are doing with mental health support and services?

  • South Ayrshire Young Scot shares national and local information to young people to empower young people to make informed decisions and choices
  • Various youth services work with young people to share useful information and develop resources on our local Young Scot website to promote mental health and wellbeing.
  • There are links on the South Ayrshire Rewired website which direct all South Ayrshire residents to links to helpful support in regards to mental health and wellbeing.
  • South Ayrshire Council and the Health and Social Care Partnership have twitter accounts which enables to communicate about activities, links and documents which can support mental health and wellbeing.
  • South Ayrshire promotes a range of opportunities to support wellbeing within our schools with mental health as part of the curriculum and through various campaigns, peer mentoring support programme.
  • Our Champions Board provides group work in our residential houses and schools with care experienced young people and provide group sessions around issues such as physical and emotional health.
  • Within the Young Peoples Support and Transitions team, we have access to a mental health practitioner who has a specific focus on providing counselling and support to young people who may be a particular risk due to mental health vulnerabilities.
  • For young people who require some additional support regarding their emotional wellbeing, and mental health, a Team Around the Child meeting will be arranged, involving the young person.

Environmental Protection

How are South Ayrshire Council trying to reduce the amount of single-use plastics and paper we are using?

  • The Council have a policy on single use plastics and have committed to no longer purchasing single use plastic straws, individually or in packets.
  • We have also pledged to stop using other single use plastic items by 2022
  • The Council has significantly reduced the amount of carton usage in schools with regards to milk, which comes with a straw attached. We also have school forums to look at reducing the need for single use plastic bottled water across schools in South Ayrshire
  • We are also looking to liaise with Scottish Water with regards to potential water fountains at specified locations to enable walkers and runners etc to fill their water bottle along their route to minimise the need for a plastic single use bottle.
  • The Council has just approved a Sustainable Development and Climate Change Strategy that will be looking at all elements from an environmental perspective going forward.


Are there any way we can incorporate accessible for all toilets within council owned buildings? This is to help support those who have disabilities, are gender neutral, and have unseen disabilities.

  • Access audits were carried out for all public and education buildings in 2017/18 by an external company and over 97% of the facilities were deemed universally accessible
  • Further discussions are underway to explore of options of changing a suitable signage for accessible facilities

Public Transport

Young people, over 16, are expected to pay full adult prices for bus and train tickets but usually only get paid minimum wage. The Scottish Government offer a discount until 19, is public transportation prices for young people a priority for the council?

  • Priority to influence other providers and arrange to meet with transport providers to raise concerns.
  • More advertisement and communication of schemes in place needed

Youth Facilities

There have been National discussions about reduction in youth centres and with the talk of the citadel moving into the town centre, what is the future of the current facilities including the ARK, and of other youth centres such as the Domain; and how can young people be part of the planning of the development?

  • It is still early days for the planning of a new leisure centre, but we would consult with existing users such as the ARK to find out what their plans are if we did replace the facility and what we can do to help them out.
  • South Ayrshire Council is committed to improving outcomes for our young people. As part of our Children’s Service plan and our Local Outcome Improvement Plan (LOIP) we have set out our commitment to reduce the gap in outcomes for young people living in our most deprived communities. SAC recognises youth work, delivered by both our own youth services and our Youth Strategy partners, play a key role in supporting these outcomes.
  • As part of the Place Planning initiative young people from the Domain Youth Centre have already been consulted on what they think about physical and social aspects in their local community, this includes the Domain Youth Centre. Information from the consultation is currently being collated and this will contribute the place plan priorities for North Ayr.

The Skate Park located on Craigie Road is popular amongst many young people, it has become rusted and may become a health and safety hazard. Is there any way that this can be updated to make it safe for the young people?

  • The site is inspected on a regular basis as are all of our play parks. In addition we commission an external examiner who is a Registered and Certified Inspector to assess all play areas. In the 2018 some defects were identified but all were considered low or very low risk. Neighbourhood Services is progressing to rectify those defects identified.
  • The current North Ayr Placemaking Initiative together with the Craigie Park consultation may well see this skatepark as a project for the future for development.

Scottish Government Actions

With the Scottish Governments plan to incorporates the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child into Scots law by 2021, how do you plan to ensure that council employees know and promote about children and young people’s rights?

  • The aim here is to enshrine children’s rights in law before BREXIT as there is a risk there will be less protection of their rights post-BREXIT.
  • We will need to do training on the UNCRC for staff and update the current EQIA process

Negative Perception Felt by Young People

What can be done to tackle negative perception felt by young people within shopping centres and town centres as a result of being told to move due to “loitering” for an extended period of time?

Response from Ayr Central Security:

  • Ayr Central Security Team met with South Ayrshire Youth Forum to discuss this question and assure young people that they are not unfairly treated, as no matter the age of the person anybody who takes part in any anti-social behaviour such as swearing, shouting or spitting will receive a warning or may in some cases be asked to leave the premises. The main concern that the security at Ayr Central team see is the use of sports equipment in the centre. As it is a shopping centre there should be no use of bikes and skateboards and anyone that is seen using this equipment in the centre will also be asked to leave. However Ayr central Security agreed that it is important to inform and discuss with any adult or young person the reason as to why they are being asked to leave the premises and will be discussed on a respectful manner.

Head back to the South Ayrshire Youth Forum landing page.