Our approach

The Care Inspectorate was tasked by the Scottish Government to lead on scrutiny and assurance to support the implementation of the community justice model and provide up-to-date scrutiny and assurance of justice social work.

The Community Justice (Scotland) Act 2016 introduced the current model of community justice. The Scottish Government outline the priorities in the national strategy for community justice.

The Act also established a national body, Community Justice Scotland to oversee community justice and introduce requirements to achieve national and local outcomes. These are highlighted within an Outcomes, Performance and Improvement Framework (OPIF).

The Scottish Government also commissioned the Care Inspectorate to develop a guide to self-evaluation for community justice in Scotland. The self-evaluation guide aligns to the national strategy and the OPI Framework (OPIF).

The guide is primarily for community justice partnerships to support continuous improvement. It also informs our approach to scrutiny and assurance of justice social work.

Since the strategic justice strategic team was established in 2018, we have undertaken a range of scrutiny, assurance and improvement activities in collaboration with a number of partners. We published an overview report in December 2021 which details our work and summarises the key findings.

How we do it

For detail on the methods we have used below, follow this link.

  • Justice social work: inspections of community payback orders
  • Community justice partnerships: supported and validated self-evaluation
  • Community justice social work: throughcare review
  • Our other work with scrutiny partners

Getting involved

We are committed to meaningfully involving people with lived experience of the justice system in our scrutiny, assurance and improvement activities. We want to develop an ethical, person-centred approach that promotes best practice. A pilot approach was developed in partnership with a national third sector agency. However, intended activities were disrupted by Covid-19. We aim to progress this work in 2022/23.

If you have any questions about our work please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.