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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-01347: Liam McArthur (Orkney Islands)

Scottish Liberal Democrats

Date lodged: 8 July 2016

To ask the Scottish Government how many people have (a) accessed and (b) successfully completed the government-supported SACRO diversion from prosecution programmes in each of the last five years, broken down by age.

Answered by: Annabelle Ewing 2 August 2016

The Scottish Government is committed to keeping people out of the criminal justice system whenever possible. Diversionary schemes are designed to prevent the re-occurrence of offending through early or intensive intervention outwith court. Decisions to refer an accused to a diversion scheme are taken by prosecutors after full consideration of the facts and circumstances of the case reported by the Police.

The Scottish Government supported Sacro Anti-Sectarian Services (SASS) diversion from prosecution programme was developed in late 2013 and began working with referrals in May 2014. The service is open to a wide range of organisations to make referrals although participation is voluntary, and if the client decides against participation the matter is returned to the referring body. If this is a Procurator Fiscal, Sheriff or Early and Effective Intervention team then the client may face prosecution or another disposal. I will be seeking a meeting with the Lord Advocate in the near future to further discuss the diversionary approach.

Data provided to the Scottish Government by Sacro shows the number of people that have accessed and completed the diversion programme. 

2014 - 2015

 

Age of participant

Accessed Sacro programme

Completed Sacro programme

<16

1

1

16-20

4

2

21-30

3

3

31-40

2

2

41-50

1

1

>50

1

1

Totals

12

10

 

2015 - 2016

 

Age of participant

Accessed Sacro programme

Completed Sacro programme

<16

1

1

16-20

4

4

21-30

1

1

31-40

5

4

41-50

-

-

>50

2

2

Totals

13

12

 

2016 - Present date

 

Age of participant

Accessed Sacro programme

Completed Sacro programme

<16

5

5

16-20

2

(1 on-going)

21-30

1

(1 on-going)

31-40

1

(1 on-going)

41-50

-

-

>50

-

-

Totals

9

5