Scottish National Missing Persons Framework Project

Missing in Scotland

There are more than 20,000 missing incidents reported to Police Scotland every year, with many more incidents going unreported.  Launched in May 2017, The National Missing Persons Framework was the first of its kind in Scotland. Its aim is to build on existing good practice from professionals around missing by existing as guidance with regard to the following aims:

  • To prevent people from going missing in the first place;
  • To limit the harm associated with people going missing in Scotland.

Missing People is uniquely placed to support the Scottish Government’s work in implementing The National Missing Persons Framework. We are the only national charity that supports missing and returned children and adults as well as their families left behind. We have supported every stage of the development and implementation of the Framework, including being a key member of the Framework Development Steering Group.

Our work in Scotland

We have a strong working partnership with Police Scotland, with a renewed partnership signing in 2018; and we are in receipt of multi-year funding from the Scottish Government to raise awareness and use of our services for young people, which has led to increased use of our services by young people.

Since July 2019, we have been working in Partnership with Scottish Government to deliver a programme of support to professionals working with missing adults and children, in accordance with the National Missing Persons Framework.  The National Missing Persons Framework Implementation Project was delivered in three local areas – Dundee, Edinburgh and Fife, between July 2019 and March 2020, and is being delivered in an additional three local areas – North Lanarkshire, Renfrewshire and Moray, between April 2020 and March 2021.

The project is comprised of some of the following activities:

  • Mapping and reviewing local policies, protocols and practices for missing people and their families from the following agencies: Police Scotland, local authorities, NHS, and Education.
  • Delivery of a tailored programme of bespoke consultancy and training with specific recommendations for each area to ensure that policies and practice are in line with good practice, as laid out in The Framework.
  • Journey Mapping Workshops for local professionals responding to missing adults and missing children to enable local agencies to better understand local procedure, identify gaps in support and areas for development.

We delivered Return Discussion training to professionals working with children in Edinburgh, with plans to deliver Covid-secure Return Discussion training online, to Dundee, Fife, North Lanarkshire, Renfrewshire and Moray, for children and adults, from November 2020.

A national conference to share good practice across Scotland was due to be held in March 2020 has been postponed to an online event in November 2020 due to Covid-19.  We will be hosting a second annual conference on missing and good practice in March 2021, and launching a Good Practice Toolkit for professionals, which will be launched at the 2021 conference.

“We look forward to working further with the charity to make improvements in the areas identified in the review and appreciate their assistance in respect of delivering these.”

– Police Scotland D Division

Project Reports

Our project reports demonstrate the impact and scope of our work with multi-agency professionals in local areas across Scotland, to date.

Year 1 Report (March 2019-June 2020)

For information about how our Missing Specialists can help your local area, please visit our Services for Professionals page.

Find out more

If you’re interested in us working with you to deliver consultancy or training in your local area, get in touch.

Contact us


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