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FAQ – SORAM (Sex Offender Risk Assessment and Management)

What is SORAM?

SORAM is Sex Offender Risk Assessment and Management.   This is the joint management of sex offenders between An Garda Síochána and the Probation Service with the involvement of the Child and Family Agency (Tusla) where there are Child Protection concerns.

What is the purpose of SORAM?

SORAM has been established to support enhanced levels of co-operation and co-ordination between key statutory agencies involved in managing the risk posed to the community by convicted sex offenders and in safeguarding the welfare of children.

Are all sex offenders managed through SORAM?

No, not all sex offenders are managed through SORAM. In order to be considered for inclusion in SORAM the sex offender must be under the supervision of the Probation Service. For Data Protection reasons, information may only be shared between An Garda Síochána and the Probation Service for offenders involved with both agencies. Currently, approximately 15% of sex offenders in the community are being managed through SORAM.

What are the entry criteria for inclusion in SORAM?

In order for a sex offender to be considered for joint management through SORAM, the sex offender must:

  • Be subject to the supervision of the Probation Service
  • Be currently subject to Part 2 of the Sex Offenders Act, 2001 (notification requirements); have a previous sexual conviction or a conviction with a sexual element AND
  • Be at least Medium or above on the Risk Matrix 2000 risk assessment

How long is a sex offender included in SORAM?

The length of time subject to supervision by the Probation Service will determine the length of time a sex offender is included in SORAM.

How does SORAM work at a local level?

In each of the 28 Garda Divisions, there is a Local SORAM Team made up of a Garda Inspector, Senior Probation Officer and Principal Social Worker along with the liaison Gardaí, supervising Probation Officers and assigned Social Workers for the sex offenders included in the Local SORAM Team area. Each Team meets every 6-8 weeks and discusses the offenders, including their risk assessments, etc and a risk assessment and management plan is drawn up by the Team to manage the risk posed by each of these sex offenders. 

The liaison Gardaí and supervising Probation Officers carry out joint visits and risk assessments of the offenders.   This information is shared between the agencies and if a child protection issue arises a referral is made to the Child and Family Agency (Tusla) in accordance with Children First Guidance.