What is the
Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme?
The Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme begins in the Northumbria Police area from 11 October, 2010.
The force is an early adopter of the scheme which is aimed at improving the safety of children living in the force area.
It allows, for the first time, a two way disclosure of information providing parents, guardians and carers with the necessary information to help them better safeguard their children’s safety and welfare.
Anyone can make an application through the scheme about an individual and this can include any third party such as a grandparent, neighbour or friend.
If there is immediate or imminent risk of harm to the child or children then this will be dealt with urgently through existing procedures. If there is no immediate risk then the new scheme will be followed and the whole process will be completed within 45 days, unless it is extended due to exceptional circumstances.
If the individual has convictions for sexual offences against children and disclosure is necessary to protect the child or children there is a presumption that the information will be disclosed. This may also apply to other information linked to violent offending or other offending behaviour if the individual is deemed as posing a risk of causing harm to the child or children concerned.
Any disclosure will only be made to the parent, carer or guardian best placed to protect the child or children. Any third party making the application would not necessarily receive disclosure if they were not best placed to protect the child or children.
Information released in the disclosure is confidential and not released to the general public at any time.
The Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme does not replace any current procedure but adds to those already in place.