8. Sex Offender Community Disclosure Scheme (Keeping Children Safe)
The Sex Offender Community Disclosure Scheme (Keeping Children Safe) was introduced across Scotland in 2011 and is managed by Police Scotland.
The scheme enables parents, carers or guardians to make a formal request for information about a named person who may have contact with their child if they are concerned that the person may be a risk to their child's safety and wellbeing.
For the year 2022-2023, Police Scotland received a total of 349 applications, an increase of 11 from the previous year. Online submission was the most common method of application with 330 received this way – an increase of 26 from the previous business year.
Each application submitted is carefully reviewed and risk assessed by specialist officers, including consideration of whether there is material to disclose. These processes help ensure potentially direct or indirect risks towards children are identified quickly and progressed by Police Scotland. Of the 349 applications received, a total of 14 progressed for disclosure, 3 of which were in relation to concerns around an RSO.
The scheme remains a proactive tool for protecting children, providing a clear access route for the public to raise potential child protection concerns and allowing parents/carers to take informed action to safeguard their children or indeed providing parents/carers with reassurance.
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