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Appropriate Adult Scheme

The Appropriate Adult Scheme supports children or vulnerable people in police custody to safeguard their interests, rights, entitlements and welfare.

The Police and Crime Act requires the presence of an ‘appropriate adult’ where the suspect is a child or vulnerable person.

The role of the Appropriate Adult Scheme is to safeguard the interests, rights, entitlements and welfare of children and vulnerable people who are suspected of a criminal offence.

The ‘appropriate adult’ ensures they are treated fairly and can understand the criminal justice process. 

What does volunteering involve?

As an ‘Appropriate Adult’ you will:

  • attend custody interviews
  • support, advise and assist suspects in accordance with the Code of Practice
  • observe whether the police are acting properly and fairly to respect the suspect’s rights and entitlements
  • assist suspects to communicate with the police whilst respecting their right to say nothing unless they want to as set out in the terms of the caution
  • help suspects understand their rights and ensure that those rights are protected and respected.

The Appropriate Adult Service (TAAS) is the current provider for Appropriate Adults in Custody across Avon and Somerset. Find out more about the Scheme on the TAAS website.

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