Notts Police and Crime Panel February 2017

Almost unanimous support for the increase in the precept.
Continued to explore VFM but the reality is we need uniformed officers still cos however much crime has come down, I can see the pressure on officers and the potential problems in The Meadows.
Chief Constable Craig Guildford attended the panel for the first time in his new role.
In supporting the increase, I spoke again about the dramatic action we took in Nottingham in 2004, and that the Police and the local authority are a strategic partnership to work for community safety – and that partnership was hurt by actions taken over the city police decision – a decision that the new chief constable has an opportunity to review.
Acknowledgement that the Tri-Force proposals have been slow to progress and have not yet delivered any rewards; but progress was being sought.
A surprise that £20m of investment is now planned for changes to Bridewell, whose facilities don’t match Home Office standards.  Some opportunities it seems for revenue savings, but it seems the spend is needed for its own sake.


Holocaust Memorial Day civic service of commemoration – 2017

You need social courage”   …. from HMD’s video   … worth 3 minutes of your time –

A ceremony held a The Council House – this year much more about the genocide of the Jews during WWII.  A shame Donald Trump couldn’t join in.
Instead – chaos at US airports over actions geared more to prejudice than effective action against terrorism; Mo Farah likely to be excluded from training in the USA; legal officers having to suspend aspects of a Presidential order cos of lack of process; a fire attack on a mosque in Texas.

Paddy Tipping – a descendant of the Huguenots who came to Britain centuries ago to avoid persecution by the then Catholic church – spoke on current concerns :
about heightened prejudice against Muslims; contrast that with how well all our kids get on at schools; hate crime remains an issue, even if it’s calmed down since after the Referendum.

Notts Police and Crime Panel December 2016

The first meetiwp_20161219_14_02_07_pro-ab0078h-ch-police-panelng after the appointment of the new Chief Constable who takes up the post on 1st February.
Sue Fish’s service was acknowledged.
Current issues:
– fall in satisfaction with the service – probably tied in with Police having to choose to not provide enough service, cos of the cuts (100 fewer officers);
– recruitment of BME officers;
– problems with changes in standards to the national recording system;
– national initiatives (d.g. digitalisation) requiring finance;
– grant for budget remaining constant for next year, but with inflation requiring savings of £5m.
Paddy expressed dismay at signitificant aspects of an HMIC report on Notts.
I raised concerns about how poverty, job insecurity, mental health provision and the broken up schools service were creating conditions for a repeat of the problems of the eighties.


Notts Police and Crime Panel September 2016

Long and off-the-cuff explanations by Paddy Tipping (Police and Crime Commissioner) and Chief Constable Sue Fish on approaches to –
– balancing the budget in a year made difficult by the Conservative government cuts; (and more cuts next year);
– tackling the recent growth in knife crime (ChCo Fish having served nationally on this issue);
– hate crime and why it isn’t being reported enough; and the startling media reaction to treating misogyny as a hate crime:
– failure to recruit and promote enough BME and women officers;
– progress of cost sharing across 3 Police forces;
– making IT systems serve policing effectively;
– recruiting a new Chief Constable.

Despite the many concerns about policing in the city raised by  City Councillors, including Leslie Ayoola (attending as a substitute), Paddy re-asserted that the city has the fastest falling rates of crime of anywhere in the country.

I asked about the cost of policing the EDL demo and was surprised that this was interpreted as challenging the decision to allow their demonstration to take place; I was more concerned about whether £200,000 or so really had to be spent and what reviews are being made about the cost.

Difficult to sum up a meeting that was working hard to discuss issues in some ‘width’.  Educational, but a clear sense of purpose and focus to the next steps that are needed.

Meadows point – can a way be found to get out of the Riverside Police Station PFI deal?

The N Post was to feature on the fresh recruitment.

Notts Police and Crime Panel June 2016

My first meeting and the first after Paddy Tipping’s re-election as Police Commissioner.
And it was a robust one.

But first some congratulations to Paddy for his victory with a bigger share, when Labour’s national rating was much lower. Still, points to be made about turnout, except next PCC election will coincide with the General Election.  But returning to County Hall reminded me of how much more power and say we had as County Councillors back in 1993 when I was first elected as a representative and joined the Police Committee.

The main controversy was over the abolition of the City Police Division – except there’s been no re-organisation yet.  There was quite an exchange as we tried to establish what had happened and when, and who knew and who’s been asked.  Questions also over when are re-organisations strategic and when are they operational.

But before that, points about whether are things are going wrong more generally, with inspectors over-stretched and partnership working & community consultation possibly not working so well.

It’s clear cuts are a threat to the quality of service,  even if crime rates are falling faster in Nottingham than any other city.  There’s been recent stabbings, and even a murder last week.  My theme was to test if we are back to where we were in 1993 when shootings in Ashforth Street started events that led to big problems in 2003.