Exactly one year before Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) take office, the Policing Minister has called for all dynamic and driven individuals to come forward as candidates.
One year to go
Speaking at the Institute for Government, Policing Minister Nick Herbert said: ‘One year from today will be the eve of a new era in policing. The most significant democratic reform of policing in our lifetime will be about to come to life as 41 elected Police and Crime Commissioners in England and Wales take office.
‘Police and Crime Commissioners will need to be outstanding leaders. They will be hugely important figures and the role will be demanding and challenging. The first set of elected PCCs will be pioneers, driving through changes in relatively uncharted territory. They will need a firm resolve and commitment to engage with the public, listen and respond to their needs’ he added.
Voice for the public
Individual Police and Crime Commissioners will be directly elected by local communities to be the voice of the people and hold the police to account on behalf of the communities they serve.
They will determine how crime fighting resources are allocated and, in many cases, be responsible for budgets of tens of millions of pounds. They will determine how much local taxpayers should pay for their police force and, in consultation with their chief constable, decide the priorities for their police force.
They will also appoint, and if necessary dismiss, the chief constable.
Call for candidates
‘These are big jobs for big figures’ the Policing Minister said today.
Nick Herbert went on to set out his vision that PCCs be made up of people from all walks of life to stand and make a difference for local communities. He reiterated that candidates don’t have to be politicians to stand and could be independent of political parties.
He also called upon people from all sides of the debate to now come together to support this radical reform of policing in England and Wales and play a part in ensuring it is a success. Setting out the vigorous discussion and scrutiny of the government’s plan that has taken place over the last eighteen months, as well as the steps the government has taken to listen to concerns and make sure the British model of impartial policing is preserved, the Minister concluded: ‘Parliament has now spoken’.
‘It is time for everyone to move on from the debate about the merits of reform, and work together to ensure the reforms are a success not just for the sake of the police, but above all for the sake of the public’ the Minister said.