Police Scotland launches online form for Sex Offender Community Disclosure Scheme
The scheme allows members of the public to find out if someone who has access to their child is a registered child sex offender
Child abuse - Image credit: PA Images
Police Scotland has launched an online form to improve accessibility to the Sex Offender Community Disclosure Scheme.
The scheme, also known as the ‘Keeping Children Safe’ scheme was launched in 2009 and rolled out across Scotland.
Community disclosure provides a formal route for the public to directly raise child protection concerns and request information about any person they are worried about who has access to a child.
The scheme enables parents, carers or guardians of children under 18 years old to make a formal request for information about a person who has contact with their child if they are worried that he or she could be a registered child sex offender.
This could be, for example, if a mother wants to find out more about her new boyfriend who will have access to her children.
Until now the public has had to phone the police or speak to police in person if they want to access the scheme.
Any member of the public who is concerned about a person’s access to someone else’s child can also apply under the community disclosure scheme, although only the parent, carer or guardian will be given information.
The vast majority of sex offenders are known to the victim and often they are an acquaintance or family member.
If the person the application relates has been convicted of a sex offence against a child or the police have other information about the person that they assess may put a child’s safety at risk, they will share the information that is necessary to protect the child with the parent or guardian.
The community disclosure scheme does not replace formal checks by Disclosure Scotland or employment checks provided by the Vetting and Barring Scheme (the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007) for those who work with children or vulnerable adults.
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