Complaints, investigations and misconduct in policing - recommendations: progress report - December 2022

Fourth thematic progress report following publication of the independent review of complaints, investigations and misconduct in policing in Scotland, setting out implementation progress with details of the status and lead responsibility for each recommendation.


This is the fourth thematic progress report following the publication of final report from Dame Elish Angiolini’s Independent Review of Complaints, Investigations and Misconduct in Policing in Scotland in November 2020.

Since the publication of the final report two years ago, the series of Thematic Progress Reports published by Scottish Government have tracked the significant steps taken by Police Scotland, the Scottish Police Authority (SPA), the Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (PIRC), the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) and HMICS to implement recommendations. Those organisations have delivered major business transformation and service redesign to improve how complaints are handled, bringing greater transparency, fairness and accessibility to systems, policies and process. The last Thematic Progress Report, published in June 2022, confirmed that 44 recommendations had been discharged at that time.

This fourth report now confirms that a further 11 recommendations have been signed off as completed by the Ministerial Group, bringing the total number of recommendations discharged to 55. Structured under nine themes, the report records the current status of each recommendation, including those where recommendations have been delivered and signed off, and also highlights some of the key achievements made over the period 1 April 2022 to 30 September 2022.

Earlier this year, the Scottish Government launched a full public consultation seeking views which will help to inform development of the Police Complaints and Misconduct Handling Bill as set out in the Programme for Government on 6 September 2022. An independent analysis of the responses was published on the Scottish Government website on 30 November 2022 and will help to inform how the changes that Dame Elish recommended can be implemented as preparations for legislation continue.

Finally, in the last Thematic Progress Report, we referred to recommendations made by the international scrutiny committees (ISCs) and our intention to provide progress information where there is clear alignment to recommendations made by Dame Elish in both her Preliminary and Final Reports. This includes recommendations made by the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment of Punishment (CPT) in 2018, the National Preventative Mechanism (NPM) in 2020 and those made by the United Nations’ Subcommittee on the Prevention of Torture (SPT). Although this work does not sit within this governance and reporting framework, in the final section of this report, we have provided a summary of progress where there are synergies between the work undertaken by partners to progress recommendations made by Dame Elish and those of the ISCs. This is intended to bring greater visibility to the significant volume of ongoing work in response to the ISCs’ inspection reports.



Back to top