Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme - 777/13
Dated: 01 Nov 2013
Date of request: 15/10/2013
Date of response: 01/11/2013
Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')(FOIA)
Thank you for your email dated 15 October 2013 in which you made a request for access to certain information which may be held by Northumbria Police.
As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.
This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act and concerns the Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme, commonly known as "Sarah’s law".
For questions 2, 3, 4 and 5, please break this information down into calendar years, including the most up-to-date information for 2013.
1) When did your force introduce the scheme?
2) How many requests have been made through the scheme since its introduction?
3) How many times has a request resulted in a disclosure because the person has a prior conviction for a sex offence?
4) How many times has a request resulted in a disclosure despite no prior conviction for a sex offence? ***
5) How many times has a request resulted in further action being taken, for example, arrests made for breach of court orders or social services being alerted?
6) How many people whose details were disclosed have complained they have become victims of violence or anti-social behaviour as a direct result of the disclosure?
***For question 4, if possible, please break this information down into (a) disclosures where intelligence or information suggests the person has a sexual interest in children despite no prior sex offence, and (B) disclosures for any other reason. If this is not possible for either logging reasons or time constraints, please just provide question 4 as one figure.
We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.
Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Legal Department of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police.
I have today decided to disclose the located information to you as follows.
The figures provided below do not represent the fact that in many cases, applicants are already aware of the history of the subject of the application and therefore, a formal additional disclosure is unnecessary. Also the figures do not reflect disclosures which may already have been made as a result of other safeguarding action (eg through MAPPA, social services etc)
Please note that it is not always possible to link further action which may have been taken in relation to a specific application subject back to that application therefore the figures given are on the basis of the information held on the Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme file.
Two of the recorded applications in 2013 are ongoing and have not yet resulted in a decision regarding disclosure.
You should note that on this occasion we see no harm in releasing this information, however this may not be the case for future such requests.
With the above in mind please see the requested information below.
1) October 2010
2010 - 13
2011 - 38
2012 - 28
2013 - 15
2010 - 2
2011 - 2
2012 - 3
2013 - 0
2010 - 2013 - None
2010 - 1
2011 - 1
2012 - 0
2013 - 0
Due to the different methods of recording information across 43 forces, a specific response from one constabulary should not be seen as an indication of what information could be supplied (within cost) by another. Systems used for recording these figures are not generic, nor are the procedures used locally in capturing the data. For this reason responses between forces may differ, and should not be used for comparative purposes.
The information we have supplied to you is likely to contain intellectual property rights of Northumbria Police. Your use of the information must be strictly in accordance with the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (as amended) or such other applicable legislation. In particular, you must not re-use this information for any commercial purpose.
How to complain
If you are unhappy with our decision or do not consider that we have handled your request properly and we are unable to resolve this issue informally, you are entitled to make a formal complaint to us under our complaints procedure which can be found at: http://www.northumbria.police.uk/foi/disclosurelog/foicomprights.asp
If you are still unhappy after we have investigated your complaint and reported to you the outcome, you may complain directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office and request that they investigate to ascertain whether we have dealt with your request in accordance with the Act.