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Your rights and responsibilities for Stop and Search

Here's a basic rundown of rights that protect you:

  • The officers searching you must use the stop and search powers fairly, responsibly and with respect, without discriminating.
  • If English is not your first language, and you do not understand why you have been stopped, reasonable steps must be taken to provide you with information in your own language.
  • The officer must make sure that the search time is kept to a minimum.
  • The search must take place near where you are stopped, except in instances where moving you would protect your privacy.
  • The officer does not have the power to stop you in order to find grounds for a search. A more comprehensive site to all your rights when you are stopped and searched is contained on the Home Office website


You are entitled to obtain a full copy of a stop and search record within 3 months of the encounter.

To obtain a full written record of a stop and search encounter please use the details on the reverse side of this receipt and, complete out internet enquiry page at: www.gmp.police.uk/stopandsearch or produce this receipt at any Greater Manchester Police station. Alternatively, please dial: 101

Further information regarding your rights and entitlements in relation to stop and search encounters can be found on the internet: www.gmp.police.uk/stopandsearch or https://www.gov.uk/police-powers-to-stop-and-search-your-rights

Your Feedback is Really Important

Stop and search should only be carried out where there are reasonable grounds to do so. You should be treated fairly, politely and with respect at all times, and given an explanation for the stop and search.

If you would like to share your experience of the stop and search please email: stopandsearch.feedback@greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk

You may be contacted by a member of staff who is independent of the police to discuss your experience in more detail. Your personal information will not be shared with the police without your consent but your feedback will be used to improve the service the police provide.

What are my responsibilities?

  • Everyone has a civic duty to help police officers prevent crime and catch offenders. The fact that the police may have stopped someone does not mean they are guilty of an offence.
  • Apart from the inconvenience, people may feel irritated that they’ve been stopped when they haven’t done anything wrong – that’s completely understandable. However, the stop or stop and search will be much quicker if a person co-operates with police officers.
  • Don’t forget that the stop or stop and search must be carried out according to strict rules – the police have responsibility to ensure that people’s rights are protected. Everyone should expect to be treated fairly and responsibility.
  • In almost all cases, an individual should be given a receipt of the stop or stop and search at the time it happens. The police use these powers to help make the local community safer by disrupting crime – public co-operation is an essential part of that.

This video has been produced by the young people of Moss Side with the support of their local police officers. It demonstrates how you can make the most of a stop and search experience.


© Greater Manchester Police 2019