What you can do

​Complaints against the police

If you feel that a police officer or member of police staff has acted inappropriately, or that you have not received an appropriate level of service, you can make a complaint about it.

How to make a complaint

There are a number of ways you can do this:

  • Complete Police Scotland’s online complaint form
  • Write to the Professional Standards Department, Police Headquarters Scotland, P.O. Box 21184, Alloa, FK10 9DE
  • Dial 101 and make a report of your complaint over the telephone
  • Attend at a police station in person (find your local station here)

If your complaint is about the Chief Constable, a Deputy Chief Constable or an Assistant Chief Constable you should contact the Scottish Police Authority.

The police will require the following information where possible:

  • When did it happen? The time and date of the incident.
  • Where did it happen? The exact location of where the incident occurred.
  • What happened? Describe the incident in as much detail as you can and be specific about what it is you are concerned about.
  • Who are the officer(s) or member(s) of staff you have concerns about? Provide names and collar numbers.
  • Were there any witnesses to what happened? If so, provide details of how they can be contacted. In addition, indicate if evidence of injury or damage to property is available to support your concerns.
  • How you would like to be contacted? Please provide your preferred method of contact.

You can also ask someone to complain on your behalf such as a the Citizen's Advice Bureau, a solicitor or your local MP or MSP.

What if I am not satisfied with the outcome of an investigation

If you remain dissatisfied at the conclusion of the police complaint process, the Police Investigations & Review Commissioner (PIRC) is the appropriate organisation to contact to request that your complaint is reviewed. The PIRC is an independent organisation not connected to the police, which provides scrutiny of the way Police Scotland, the Scottish Police Authority and policing agencies in Scotland respond to complaints from the public.

For further information please contact Stonewall Stonewall on 0131 474 8019 or email info@stonewallscotland.org.uk