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Three of region’s police forces ‘require improvement’ as watchdog grades them for effectiveness

Police forces have been examined by the watchdog HMIC.

Three police forces in the Calendar region have been deemed to ‘require improvement’ when examined for effectiveness by the police watchdog HMIC.

The HM Inspectorate of Constabulary examined the effectiveness of police in England and Wales in four areas: at preventing crime and anti-social behaviour; investigating crime and managing offenders; protecting vulnerable people and supporting victims; and tackling serious and organised crime.

Only one force – Durham – was graded as ‘outstanding’. Those graded as ‘good’ included West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and Derbyshire.

Those said to ‘require improvement’ included Humberside, South Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire.

This latest report does identify some improvement, especially in relation to the prevention of crime and anti-social behaviour which I acknowledge is encouraging progress for Humberside Police in an area of interest to the public in making our communities safer places to live.

However, crucially, in the hugely important area of vulnerability Humberside Police receives a grading of ‘inadequate’ which is a step backwards from last year when the Force received a grading of ‘requires improvement’.

Following previous poor reports and a clear requirement I imposed when elected for the force to illustrate incremental and sustainable improvement, this retrograde step in such a key area is simply not acceptable.

It is of great concern to us that HMIC were critical of our safeguarding of vulnerable people; specifically the victims of domestic abuse. We are working urgently to address this and have introduced a process to improve the accountability of our safeguarding arrangements to victims…

We have also conducted an extensive campaign both within the force and in local communities, to ensure everyone recognises the signs of domestic abuse, proactively seeks out evidence of abuse and then reports this to us…

The report also highlighted that our current approach to neighbourhood policing has weakened our ability to be effective in preventing and tackling crime. We are acutely aware of this, and are working hard to gather together best practice and learning to ensure we introduce a renewed, targeted and reinvigorated approach to neighbourhood policing.

I have discussed the evidence, facts and assumptions within this report with my colleagues in the force, and recently with the HMI, in order to fully understand what appears to be a ‘mixed picture’.

The inspection was undertaken in the summer of 2016 and the vulnerability issues were immediately addressed.

The actions taken in response have placed the force in what I believe to be a much more positive position today.