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PCC looks into performance of NWP at latest scrutiny meeting


PCC and Wayne Jones

One of the key roles of Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) in England and Wales is holding the Chief Constable to account for the performance of the local Force against the priorities in the PCC’s Police and Crime Plan.

In our region, North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner, Andy Dunbobbin continues to scrutinise the work of North Wales Police through a wide variety of ways and recently conducted a further review at the quarterly Strategic Executive Board. At this meeting, which took place on 10 May, the PCC and his team met with the Chief Officers to review overall Force performance, including against the Police and Crime Plan priorities. This plan is put together in consultation with residents and, in North Wales, Andy Dunbobbin’s priorities are delivering safer neighbourhoods, a fair and effective criminal justice system, and supporting victims and communities.

At the meeting in question, the PCC reviewed the Force performance in respect of Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG), Professional Standards and culture within policing.

The PCC examined areas including:

  • How North Wales Police are preventing and investigating VAWG offences.
  • How the Force are performing against the National VAWG action plan.
  • The effectiveness of the Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conferences (MARAC) and partnership working for domestic abuse.
  • The work of the Amethyst team who investigate rape and support victims.

The PCC also scrutinised the work North Wales Police Professional Standards Department are doing aligned to the initiative the Chief Constable has implemented to improve police culture and behaviour. This included:

  • How can the force demonstrate it has a healthy ethical culture in place.
  • What does the force do to encourage and embed ethical behaviour.
  • How are local communities engaged with on force decisions, particularly on the use of powers which disproportionately impact some groups with shared protected characteristics (e.g. the use of TASER, and Stop and Search).
  • How the Chief Constable is ensuring that police recruits have the emotional competencies and behaviours necessary to work with highly vulnerable people.

Police and Crime Commissioner Andy Dunbobbin said: “The Strategic Executive Board enables me to examine how the Chief Constable is performing in critical areas, particularly those in my Police and Crime Plan.

“Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) is clearly one of these areas and I have continually looked at force performance in this area. I also heard how the Force is now part of the Operation Soteria group of forces looking at improving the whole system approach to rape investigation. I was reassured with how the force performs in this area, but there is always further work that can be done to support victims, ensure implementation of the VAWG action plan and target perpetrators. Partnership working in this area is critical and must provide appropriate support to victims in not only investigations but also the prevention of further offences.

“In respect of examining professional standards and culture this is vitally important, as recently there have been high-profile cases of gross misconduct and examples of behaviour falling well below the standard expected. As PCC, I fully recognise that such incidents and the publication of the report by Baroness Casey into the Metropolitan Police has led to a weakening of public trust and confidence in the police.

“I fully support the Chief Constable in the work she is doing in looking at these issues in the context of North Wales Police, including the recent report she prepared – and which I published – looking at the implications of the case of former Met Police officer David Carrick. This included information on the prevalence of cases of misogyny, figures on cases under investigation and the measures being implemented to protect the public and ensure the correct vetting of officers. At the Strategic Executive Board, I was reassured that the Chief has a focus on all these key areas, and I will continue to scrutinise how North Wales Police performs on these issues.”

Residents can learn more about the Strategic Executive Board and read minutes of past meetings on the OPCC website here: Scrutiny of Policing Services | Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner North Wales (