Commission welcomes progress on stop and search
The Scottish Human Rights Commission has welcomed Police Scotland’s announcement that it will examine ways to replace its use of non-statutory stop and search.
The Commission has previously called for an end to the practice and has been engaging with Police Scotland on the issue through Scotland’s National Action Plan for Human Rights (SNAP).
Professor Alan Miller, Chair of the Commission, welcomed today’s announcement,
“The Commission has been clear in our view that any stop and search should take place within a clear legal framework. All of us should be free to go about our daily business and the police should only be entitled to stop and search us if they have reasonable suspicion that we are doing something unlawful.
“In recent discussions with Police Scotland, the Commission stressed the importance of putting measures in place now to pre-empt any future legal challenge to the use of non-statutory stop and search. In our view, such a challenge would be likely to succeed, given that everyone’s right to privacy is protected by the Human Rights Act and Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.
“We are pleased that Police Scotland is now taking proactive steps to address the concerns that the Commission and others have raised. This is welcome progress towards implementing a key commitment in Scotland’s National Action Plan for Human Rights.”
- The Scottish Human Rights Commission is an independent public body with a remit to promote and protect human rights for everyone in Scotland. It is accredited as an “A status” national human rights institution within the UN system.
- The Commission issued a previous statement calling for an end to non-statutory stop and search.
- Scotland's National Action Plan for Human Rights (SNAP) was launched on 10 December 2013 and sets out a roadmap to realising human rights for everyone in Scotland. Through its engagement in SNAP, Police Scotland is committed to strengthening accountability for the respect of human rights, including ensuring legality in the use of stop and search.