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Commissioner celebrates peel inspection results

27 November, 2014

LANCASHIRE’S Police and Crime Commissioner has congratulated the Constabulary following the first-ever PEEL assessment.

The force has come out as one the country’s best in the new programme of police force inspections, which stand for Police Efficiency, Effectiveness and Legitimacy.

The report looks at how well each force in England and Wales tackles crime and anti-social behaviour; provides value for money; and provides a service that is legitimate in the eyes of the public.

And Clive Grunshaw said he is “extremely pleased” to see Constabulary’s work with victims praised – a keyfocus of his Police and Crime Plan.

The Commissioner said: “For Lancashire Constabulary to have received such positive feedback from the first ever PEEL assessment is extremely pleasing, and congratulations must go to Steve Finnigan and everyone connected with Lancashire Constabulary. The force is clearly bucking the national trend with its levels of performance, and residents should be reassured by that.

“For me – and I am sure for partners across the county – the stand-out element of the report is the recognition Lancashire Constabulary has a ‘victim-centred approach underpinned by a performance culture that is based on doing the right thing for the victim, rather than one based on specific targets for crime and anti-social behaviour’.

“This should give everyone in Lancashire great confidence in their police force, knowing officers are focussed on their needs rather than chasing performance targets. It also reflects how strongly my Police and Crime Plan is influencing the shape of policing in the county, with my clear emphasis always on the needs of victims and ensuring support for them.

“However, I am aware how hard staff and officers have had to work to achieve this in the face of significant budget cuts. And I am conscious that with £20m still to come out of Lancashire’s budget there is the potential for that to have a significant impact.

“But in spite of these challenges, an excellent report does not mean we can be complacent, and we must continue to find ways to improve and deliver high-quality services. The report does highlight concerns about pressures on funding for partnership initiatives such as those designed to safeguard children, and that is something we are looking at.

“Public services including councils and the police continue to see their budgets fall, and this will be false economy if we see more victims of crime as a result.”

Forces are assessed by a series of independent inspections, consultation and data monitoring, and then given a graded judgment of either outstanding, good, requires improvement, or inadequate.

In terms of police effectiveness, Lancashire was rated as good at reducing crime, preventing and investigating offending and tackling anti-social behavior while the efficiency with which the force carries out its responsibilities was rated as outstanding. It was also judged that the force is acting to achieve fairness and legitimacy in most of the practices that have been examined this year.

Commenting on the Constabulary’s success Chief Constable Steve Finnigan said: “I am extremely pleased with the findings of the PEEL assessment and very proud that it recognises the high quality services that we are delivering to victims here in Lancashire, particularly the most vulnerable in our society.

The inspection has recognised that we are working as hard as ever to keep people safe through challenging times and we now want to build on this by working closely with the people of Lancashire and our partner organisations to continue to keep our county safe and to ensure that communities feel safe. We must not be complacent and we recognise that there is always room for improvement; this assessment is about listening to feedback and learning.”

CC Finnigan also praised Constabulary staff and said: “For the last five years, Lancashire Constabulary has been going through a significant period of change yet our people have continued to deliver the great policing services for the public of Lancashire.

“The quality of our people is the one common denominator highlighted in this and other Inspections. It is the defining factor that we know makes the difference between being average and being excellent.”

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