Keeping you up to date on the progress of the Named Person scheme and the NO2NP campaign.
Scotland’s national police force has warned about a “lack of clarity” in the Named Person plans and highlighted complications surrounding the sharing of sensitive information.
Police Scotland said the new law would also have “cost implications” and raised fears about the forces capacity to cope with the demands of overseeing the scheme.
Chief Superintendent Alan Waddell, one of the forces most senior police officers, raised the concerns in a formal submission to the Scottish Police Authority’s corporate risk register.
Waddell said there may not be “efficient or secure systems” in place to “manage wellbeing concerns” and also warned that such “significant change for all authorities including Police Scotland” could make it harder to identify at risk children.
He added that Police Scotland’s “confidence and reputation may be negatively impacted” due to the lack of clarity about what the force’s role would be in presiding over the scheme.
Waddell said: “There is a lack of clarity as to the expectations, roles and responsibilities; therefore it is unknown at this time if current systems, models and process in PSoS [Police Scotland] can support this legislative change.”
Commenting on the issue of sharing of sensitive information he said: “Police Scotland does not currently have a consistent process on how such risk and concerns are identified, triaged managed and shared.
“In the absence of a national functioning Named Person Service, there is a concern that partners do not have efficient or secure systems in place to receive and manage such notifications.”
Waddell also highlighted the inconsistency that youngsters will have Named Persons until they are 18, but then many will be dealt with by adult courts as opposed to the children’s hearing system.
Waddell said: “This is a significant change for all authorities, including PS and requires a review of all interdependent policies and processes which impact/refer to children and young people to ensure cognisance of legislative change.”
The officer leading on public protection issues, Detective Chief Superintendent Lesley Boal, stressed that the force did not oppose the legislation and that they were looking at ways of overcoming complications detailed in the risk register.
NO2NP supporter, Liz Smith MSP, said the intervention from Police Scotland showed the force was “very sceptical” about the Named Person scheme.
She said it was extremely concerning and telling that “the very organisations who are supposed to make the policy work are now very sceptical that it can work in practice”.
“It’s just another example of why the Named Person nonsense which is peddled by the Scottish Government flies in the face of common sense.
“It is very clear now that the SNP scheme lacks guidance and showcases just how sinister the policy is with the named person having too much power.”
Police highlight ‘concerns’ over how to implement SNPs controversial Named Persons scheme, 02 July 2015
Police Scotland criticise SNP Named Person plans, 02 July 2015