Committed to being open and transparent in conducting her duties, Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Joy Allen is giving residents of County Durham and Darlington the opportunity to put their questions about the proposed centralisation of the Force’s custody provision to the Chief Constable and her senior team at a special accountability meeting held later this month.
The accountability meeting will be held on Thursday, August 26, where she will hear from and then question the Chief Constable, representative from Evolve Legal Services and senior members of staff in the Force Executive Team, Estates Department and Custody Management Team about the proposals.
A full recording of the meeting, including all questions and answers will then be uploaded on YouTube.
Until now accountability meetings (where the PCC holds the Chief Constable and the Force to account for policing in the area) have not been open to the public or recorded, but the newly elected PCC wants to address the current situation by being more open, accountable and transparent in the delivery of her duties and decision making.
The recorded meetings will enable residents to see how the accountability process works and the role the PCC plays in delivering an efficient and effective Police Service by scrutinising the performance of the force and ensuring it is responsive to the needs of the residents of County Durham and Darlington.
Recordings of the first meetings will be made available to the public via You Tube, however her desire is to live stream them in future.
PCC Allen said “Since my appointment, the proposal to centralise the custody facilities has been my primary focus.
“I have scrutinised the business case, risks, legal, contractual and financial issues relating to new centralised custody facilities.
“I have also visited all the custody suites in the force area and those in the region that have centralised custody facilities and reviewed the recent inspection reports that identified necessary improvements required to meet Home Office compliance standards.
“However, before I make the final decision whether to proceed with the proposal or not I want to provide members of the public with an opportunity to submit questions that I can raise on their behalf.
“Following this formal accountability meeting I feel I will have all the information at my disposal to make an informed decision about the most appropriate custody option for the force.
“This new progressive approach will enable me to give residents the opportunity to raise what matters most to them so I can hold the Chief Constable to account on their behalf and make County Durham and Darlington stronger, safer and more resilient to crime.”
The PCC is encouraging anyone with questions around the centralised custody and investigation suite proposal to submit them before 22 August.
Please submit your question via this link: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/YR2WXNB Please include your name and address with your question.
The meeting will be uploaded post event via YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/DurhamPCC.