Within the county of Merseyside, Merseyside Police, Merseyside Probation, the Local Authorities and the Health Authorities are committed by this agreement, and by virtue of the Sexual Offences Act 2003, to:
- share relevant information concerning sex offenders
- risk assess those offenders
- manage the risk posed to children and vulnerable persons
Risk Assessment (Information Sharing)
The act clearly places responsibility of Risk Assessment with the Police, who acknowledge the need to liaise and seek assistance from partner agencies to share information and contribute towards the evaluation process.
Partner agencies have the responsibility to initiate procedures at any stage where appropriate.
Multi Agency Public Protection Arrangements ( MAPPA )
The main points of “the arrangements” are that, if an individual meets the criteria, they are risk assessed and then risk managed. Once it has been established that an offender fits the criteria for assessment, they will be subjected to an assessment to determine potential risk. This will then place the offender at one of three levels, each one will require its own pre-determined responses as shown:
- Level 1 Ordinary risk management. ( Managed by a single agency )
- Level 2 Local inter agency risk management, controlled by Local Risk Management Meetings ( LRMM ).
- Level 3 Multi Agency Public Protection Panels ( MAPPP )
The occasions when an individual falls outside of this criteria ( e.g.- non registered sex offender ) are catered for within the protocol under Risk Assessment and Management Meetings.
MAPPA arrangements can be implemented by one of the Responsible Authorities under this legislation, they are (Police, Probation or Prison Service ). They can also be raised by one of those authorities at the request of, and after discussion with, a partner agency.
Once a concern is raised, there will be requirement for a management discussion/meeting. This will determine that the individual is covered by the criteria in order for the MAPPA to apply and decide the appropriate level, or, if they fall outside those requirements, should then be subject of the Risk Assessment and Management Meeting.
The Police and each of its partner agencies will designate a Senior Nominated Officer and contact point. The nominated officers will provide relevant information and attend Multi Agency meetings as and when appropriate. Appropriate staff will be properly trained in the agreed protocol and requirements of the act.
Police and partner agencies all have in place methods of accurately recording requests for information and responses. Records must be kept secure and records should be retained indefinitely.
The following principles have been agreed between the Police and Partner Agencies and are binding on others who participate in the process:
- Information provided between agencies shall not be disclosed to third parties without the consent of the agency providing the information except where there is a legal obligation to provide the information.
- Information may be disclosed by the Police, if, for the prevention, detection or prosecution of offences, when the Police shall liaise with the agency providing the information, if it is practical to do so.
- All agencies, through their senior nominated officers, must keep information confidential and take steps to prevent unauthorised access or disclosure.