A FIFE MP has called for action after discovering that children are being transported in handcuffs across the UK.

Neale Hanvey met with members of crisis intervention organisation Serenity Welfare and has said that the "barbaric" activity where children are "being treated like criminals" must be stopped.

While he said it was not clear yet whether the practice happens in Scotland, though he has vowed to uncover if it does, he has raised concerns that children being transported from England may be left restrained after crossing the border.

"I can't believe it is happening," he told the Times. "I can't believe anyone thinks it is appropriate.

"They are bound by private security companies, it could be any young person being transported between facilities, there is no regulation or national guidance over how care is regulated.

"In cases where a child is being moved out of an area, there are placements being made between Scotland and England and where young people are entering Scotland."

Serenity Welfare say that children do not need to be considered high risk to be restrained and that this can happen when they are being taken to school, hospital, or court hearings by security firms.

The full scale of the problem is still unknown without regulation or policy in place to monitor the use of handcuffs.

The Cowdenbeath and Kirkcaldy Alba MP added: "My plan is to write to the minister of care - but in my experience it wouldn't happen in Scotland.

"It is a barbaric way to treat someone with deep trauma - it can't go on, it is horrific and damaging.

"It is vulnerable young people who could be being transported due to criminal justice or neglect and abuse, it is difficult to distinguish.

"This is at the top of my list after meeting them (Serenity Welfare), it is an abhorrent practice which shouldn't be happening.

"It needs to be looked at and there needs to be regulation to prevent it, these children are undoubtedly traumatised and are being treated like criminals."