Why is it needed?

  • Ensures that Registered Intermediaries are used appropriately
  • Achieves better evidence for safeguarding, investigations, CPS and court
  • Answers criticisms of ABE quality.
  • Designed to improve ABE practice

It is widely recognised that investigative interviewers struggle to recognise the communication difficulties of children and teenagers with learning difficulties. ABELS addresses this in a number of different ways.

ABELS provides:-

  • A framework to identify communication difficulties specific to investigative interviews.
  • Effective and efficient rapport building.
  • Consistently identifies which children need the support of a Registered Intermediary.
  • Provides written record of rationale.
  • Embeds ABE guidance into pre-interview practice.
  • Encourages planning and preparation.
  • Identifies children who guess and/or are suggestible.
  • Offers questioning strategies to manage guessing and suggestibility
  • Give officers an understanding of a childs' processing speed, willingness to engage, intelligibility and attention & listening skills
  • Maximise the opportunity to secure a reliable and credible account

ABELS has given me a better understanding of a child's abilities, enabling me to produce better quality interviews

— DC Kim Taylor