In line with the All Wales Protocol, where it is not possible to avoid involving the police due to the severity of the situation, or where there is concern about immediate safety, police should consider use of discretionary powers to apply an informal resolution response (such as community resolution). Where the police are required to record an incident as a crime but feel further action (other than safeguarding) is not in the public interest, they have the discretion to resolve the report accordingly by applying Outcome 21 from the National Police Outcomes Framework.
Outcome 21 is set out as, ‘Further action, resulting from the crime report, which could provide evidence sufficient to support formal action being taken against the suspect is not in the public interest – Police decision. This will therefore, not be recorded as a police sanction on the Police National computer (PNC)’ (Section 5).
Further, local authorities should explain to children in care and care leavers what they should do and say if they come into contact with the police or criminal justice agencies. This will allow support services, including their Personal Advisor, to be notified and involved in decision-making and case resolution.
Where they consent to their notification, police and criminal justice agencies should seek and encourage the involvement of the care leaver’s former responsible authority and/or their support network in decision-making. This is regardless of whether their contact with police occurs inside or outside that authority. All agencies should also ensure that care experienced young adults who come in to contact with the criminal justice system are aware of their rights to legal representation and/or advocacy support (Section 6).
To improve police interactions with children and young people, including with care-experienced children and young adults, police forces in Wales have adopted a children’s rights and child-centred policing approach to their work with children and young people. These approaches advocate trauma-informed police interactions with children and brings children’s needs and experiences to the fore.
For more information on child centred policing, see the resources below.Child centred policing principlesChild centred policing best practice framework
Working with the Children’s Commissioner for Wales, forces have developed Children’s Rights Charters. These posters highlight this work in Dyfed Powys and South Wales.South Wales children’s rights charter