Police chiefs have labelled the Government’s plan to give the public more say over policing ‘perverse’ and dangerous, leaked papers revealed last night.This seems to be ACPO firing a warning shot, via the media.
The document risks igniting a ferocious row between the Association of Chief Police Officers and ministers.Good! Here’s hoping ACPO doesn’t chicken out or back down. Because they need to lose, and lose hard…
Police are not supposed to enter into contentious political areas, such as the debate over whether to introduce directly elected commissioners.Make them public by all means. If you think the public will take your side, you’ve finally – and I hope fatally – misjudged the situation.
But Sir Hugh Orde, president of ACPO, is warning that it will make public its views over the alleged risk that the flagship Tory policy poses to the public.
ACPO fears that commissioners might focus only on the local priorities needed to get them re-elected - to the detriment of nationwide duties to fight terrorism and organised crime.Which would be laughable if not for the fact that criminals and sex offenders are already making up the ranks.
The leaked papers also include a claim by ACPO that criminals and even sex offenders could be elected by the public.
Eh, Sir Hugh?
And also, this outpouring of concern for the public rings a little hollow, when it is immediately apparent that what has prompted this is concern for your own necks:
The key demand in the document, passed to the Mail, is for the Coalition to make it far harder for the elected commissioners to sack failing chief constables. Ministers consider the right for elected commissioners to hire and fire chief officers as crucial to making the service more accountable to the public.You snivelling little worm!
But ACPO is insisting there must be a legal duty on the commissioner to seek clearance from Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Constabulary.
I hope Nick Herbert tells you ‘Publish and be damned!’:
The document has been sent to police minister Nick Herbert, with a covering letter. In this, Sir Hugh says he is prepared to go public with his warnings by sending the document to a committee of MPs. It then goes on to say that - before he does so - he ‘would welcome the opportunity’ to first discuss it with ministers.Is this the sound of ACPO finally shooting themselves in both feet? I do hope so…
The Home Office is likely to view this as a warning that - if a meeting tomorrow between Sir Hugh and Mr Herbert does not go well – the document will be published.
Last night, ACPO insisted that it was not entering into political debate, but had a duty to take part in discussions over the future of the police service.Work for whom..? Not, I suspect, for us. We are expected to just pay for you, and keep our mouths shut.
Officials said they had stressed repeatedly their commitment to making the government’s policing reforms work.
Not any more.
Don’t screw this one up, iDave.
Miss Predator said: "Don't screw this one up, iDave."
What are the bets he'll manage to?
We knew it was coming.....the triumph of temerity over brains.
You have to ask yourself the big question; why are ACPO so against tbe public having a say in how they are policed?
The answer probably has more to do with the fact that the ACPO has a lot of control over the way that police forces operate and that makes them a lot of money, than it does of any risable fears that peados will become commissioners.
I look forward to day when the public has a real say in how policing works on a local level and how it prioritises particular problems. This should be done on the basis of what is important to the public and not whether it fits with the governments latest grandstanding PR puffery.
If we can get a say over policing then we can try to do same with government. Maybe.
Kill it! Kill it with fire!
I do hope ACPO "go public" with their official opinion, because it's not as if I can send them a FOIA request to get it!
The reliably inept Cameron can almost be counted upon to cock it up ..
That or at the first sign of a threat, he'll cave in ..
The man has all the backbone of a blancmange .. and is about 1/8 as much use ..
I was undecided about whether elected police commissioners was a good idea until Hugh Ordure started squealing.
Now I'm firmly in favour.
"The key demand in the document, passed to the Mail, is for the Coalition to make it far harder for the elected commissioners to sack failing chief constables."
For the words "chief constables," substitute "directors of social services" or worse "senior civil servants." See where I'm going with this? A dismissed chief constable would be a wonderful precedent, opening up the possibility of some real accountability in the upper echelons of public 'servants.' For which reason I suspect that ACPO's objections might receive sympathetic consideration in the corridors of power.
I'm all for more public say in policing; I love the idea of elected and therefore directly accountable police commissioners but like the disastrous CPS - which was hailed back in the 80's as the Uk's answer to the US District Attorney system....yeah right. This proposal will bring forth a uniquely awful BRITISH version which will ultimately fail and be worse than we had before, stuffed full of the usual suspects. But I'm with Mark Wadsworth when he says if Sir Huge Ordure is against it it must be worth a try! Cameron is incapable of doing anything properly.
Back in the day we humble patrol officers used to joke that one day there would probably be a police paedophile association and probably a police islamist terrorism supporters group too - it's not looking so amusing these days is it?
These are the lunatics I worry about getting in AGAIN!
WHY? Is it really a problem?
ACPO certainly doesn't want the public involved in decisions regarding police procedure. The proles might actually start demanding the plods perform the duties we pay them for. You know, actually detecting crime and locking up scumbags and other non-essential crap like that.
"What are the bets he'll manage to?"
I'm a lot more hopeful on this one - wet he may be, but this is a direct challenge to his authority, and he shouldn't be willing to tolerate it.
"I look forward to day when the public has a real say in how policing works on a local level..."
Me too. The ferocity with which ACPO are fighting it makes me want it all the more.
"A dismissed chief constable would be a wonderful precedent, opening up the possibility of some real accountability in the upper echelons of public 'servants.'"
Ooooh, yes! :)
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