Appropriate Adults provide communication support to adults who are considered vulnerable and become involved in the justice system. This can be as a victim, witness, suspect or accused person.
The first Appropriate Adult service in Scotland was established in 1991 with services being developed across Scotland thereafter. In January 2020, with the enactment of the Criminal Justice (Scotland) Act 2016 (Support for Vulnerable Persons) Regulations 2019, local authorities were given the legal responsibility to provide Appropriate Adult services.
This Information Sheet, written by Carole Murphy, outlines the roles and responsibilities of an Appropriate Adult, and development of statutory services to ensure the experiences and outcomes for people who receive the support of an Appropriate Adult are improved.
Thank you to Jo Savege, National Appropriate Adult Coordinator, COSLA, for her contribution to this Information Sheet.