Policy actions  4 of 6

Public protection: Multi Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA)

We are committed to doing all we can to minimise the potential risks posed by the most serious offenders to keep communities safe.

The Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA) were established in 2007 under the Management of Offenders (Scotland) Act 2005. This legislation imposes a duty on the responsible authorities in a local authority area to jointly establish arrangements for assessing and managing the risks posed by certain categories of offenders.

MAPPA covers:

  • Registered Sex Offenders who are subject to notification requirements under the Sexual Offences Act 2003
  • Mentally Disordered Restricted Patients
  • other Risk of Serious Harm Offenders

MAPPA aims to protect the public by requiring the police, NHS, prison service and local authorities (known as responsible authorities) to work together to assess and manage the risk each individual managed under these arrangements poses.

Agencies can use a range of safeguards including surveillance, electronic tagging, curfews, sexual offence prevention orders, and other civil orders which are intended to reduce the risk of sexual harm. More detail on these orders is set out in the national guidance (see below).

MAPPA guidance for responsible authorities

We have produced national MAPPA guidance for responsible authorities and others with an interest in this area.

National Accommodation Strategy for Sex Offenders in Scotland

The National Accommodation Strategy for Sex Offenders (NASSO) forms part of MAPPA, and sets out how housing contributes to those arrangements.

We have published related guidance to help responsible authorities carry out environmental risk assessments relating to the housing arrangements for particular offenders.

Ongoing MAPPA arrangements

Our plans and progress in relation to MAPPA are set out in our annual MAPPA Scotland overview reports.

Each of the 10 MAPPA regions also produces an annual report. These are:

  • Fife
  • Forth Valley
  • Glasgow
  • Lanarkshire
  • Lothian and Borders
  • Grampian
  • Highlands and Islands
  • North Strathclyde
  • South West Scotland
  • Tayside

MAPPA National Strategic Group

The MAPPA National Strategic Group is responsible for the strategic oversight and development of MAPPA. It is chaired by the Scottish Government and includes representatives from Police Scotland, Scottish Prison Service, the 10 MAPPA strategic oversight group chairs, the Risk Management Authority, Social Work Scotland and NHS Forensic Network. 

Statistics about registered sex offenders

Police Scotland is responsible for collating and publishing statistics about registered sex offenders.

See the Police Scotland website for registered sex offender numbers.

Sex offender disclosure

You can ask the police to check if someone involved with a child has a record of sexual offences. This is called the Sex Offender Community Disclosure Scheme.

Visit the Police Scotland website for information on the Sex Offender Community Disclosure Scheme.