Matthew Ellis, the Conservative Candidate has been elected with 51.85% of the vote as the first Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire Police. Matthew Ellis took 51,237 votes to Joy Garners 47,589 votes, winning by 3,648 votes..
11.6% (98826) of eligible people voted, out of a possible 849784.
|Matthew Ellis||Conservative Party||51237||51.85%||Elected|
|Joy Garner||Labour||47589||48.15%||Not elected|
|Number of ballot papers rejected||2843|
Chief Constable Mike Cunningham said:
"I would like to welcome Matthew to the role of Police and Crime commissioner for Staffordshire and look forward to forging a strong relationship as we work to keep the communities of Staffordshire safe and reassured."
Chief Executive of Staffordshire Police Authority Damon Taylor added:
"Today's election result is the culmination of many months of planning to ensure that the right arrangements are in place for the incoming Police & Crime Commissioner. I congratulate Matthew on his victory and now look forward to working alongside them to fully develop this new role to ensure that it contributes effectively towards the greater benefit of policing and community safety, working with the many diverse communities of Staffordshire".
PCC Ellis Campaign Pledges
“LET POLICE OFFICERS BE POLICE OFFICERS NOT STUCK BEHIND DESKS”
Project P3k could release up to 3000 more police officer hours for frontline policing each week. It’s about police officers doing what they were trained to do… that’s fighting crime and catching criminals.
How? Systems which support the police service and processes that connect together the different parts of the criminal justice system could be improved very significantly given the will and ambition to do so. It’s been tried nationally but hasn’t been successful but has been proven to be more effective in public services at a more local level.
Staffordshire Police administers 220,000 statements about incidents or crimes each year. That’s over 4,000 every week and if the average five hours ‘whole administration’ time for each of them was reduced by just 45mins it would free up an extra 3,000 hours for frontline policing each week. Many would argue 45 minutes reduction isn’t challenging enough and I believe we could do even more.
It’s been done elsewhere in the public sector and in some police areas and although it would mean a fundamental change of approach behind the scenes and also investment, the prize of more police hours out and about must be worth it.
I’d also look at extending the ability of PCSOs to deal with statements, which has freed up more warranted police officer time in parts of the country, and consider introducing self serving statements for more minor incidents. That could be done online or using templates and would be the choice of the individual providing the statement. It would not apply to complex, serious or certain categories of incident.
I also believe there are great opportunities to undo some of the ‘specialist’ silo approaches to different elements of policing work which have developed over the years. They do little more than give the appearance of more time for frontline policing because in reality they are not efficient and often take up more non frontline time than officers following an arrest through the full cycle.
RESOURCES MOVED TO PREVENTING CRIME FROM DETECTING IT
Budgets are used for preventing crime from happening and also for detecting crime after it has. Research in some countries has shown that moving resources to the prevention of crime from the detection of it has been successful in reducing overall crimelevels at some pace.
In other words stopping crimes from happening rather than spending more on detecting it afterwards. And police currently have targets for crime detection after the event.
A simple question is given the choice would you or your family rather avoid being the victim of crime or suffer an incident which was later solved? It’s not about stopping the detection of crime, it’s simply a matter of looking at the balance between the two.
VICTIMS AS PEOPLE NOT A CRIME NUMBER
Too many people believe that the police service is more concerned about providing a crime number so people can claim on their insurance than being concerned that the crime has taken place.
It’s viewed as uncaring and that the police don’t care enough about the victims of crime. That isn’t true but the move towards fewer visits for more types of ‘minor’ crime has created that impression.
It’s a particular problem in crime against business where more and more small business owners are not reporting crimes because they think the police will not act. That can’t be right and in many rural areas the absense of actual police visits makes communities feel the same way and more disconnected.
Project P3k could release more frontline hours, some of which, could be used to allow police officers to visit and reassure more people who have suffered a loss or damage as a victim of, particularly, anti social crime.
More work must also be done to ensure greater information on progress or otherwise of investigations is given to victims of crime or incidents so they feel more informed.
Better information handling and the use of technology could also reduce the ‘they’re not on duty’ syndrome where it seems that information is only available when a particular officer is ‘on shift’. All that information should be available at any time to meet victims enquiries.
TOUGHER ON PROLIFIC OFFENDERS
A small number of offenders are often the cause of a disproportionately large amount of crime and anti social behaviour in an area.
It feels like a treadmill which never ends. We must be tougher on people and families who are the cause of so much distress but must also be far more effective at breaking that cycle. It is very often generational and the result of drug use, alcohol abuse or decades of entire families relying on benefits. Alcohol abuse and domestic violence is often a theme. Too many communities which have local problems find that when certain individuals have been convicted and imprisoned the problems reduce or even cease. But the problems start again after release and the ‘cycle of criminality’ often starts again until the next time away.
Prolific offenders let out from prison will get a clear message but also more enforced support back into lawful society and off the generational treadmill of social issues and criminality.
That support is delivered by almost every single public service but too often it is fragmented and ineffective serving only to be maintain the issues rather than addressing the cause. That multi-agency work must be structurally joined together in Staffordshire with pooled budgets that force a focus on progressing offenders and their families to behaving differently. If they don’t they will face tougher ‘in your face’ policing than ever before in Staffordshire to protect local communities.
TOUGHER ON ANTI SOCIAL DRINKING
In some towns across Staffordshire, and particularly parts of Stoke on Trent City such as Hanley, Friday and Saturday nights are virtual no go areas because of binge drinking, anti social behaviour and violence.
It also reinforces and maintains the wrong type of night time economy which alienates many, brings immoveable reputations maintaining social decline and is ultimately a massive cost for Staffordshire tax payers. Hanley, requires immense amounts of policing at specific times simply to maintain order and the safety of people there. It makes some places real no go areas for people simply wanting an enjoyable social night out.
A major clampdown and greater multi agency approach to licensees who don’t run a socially responsible alcohol business is needed now.
Not a softly, softly approach but a tough and consistent policy that has growing a responsible and successful night time economy at its heart rather than an economy at any social and financial cost.
FASTER, OPEN AND RESTORATIVE JUSTICE
Faster on the spot justice for those engaging in anti social behaviour and alcohol fuelled violence in some of Staffordshire’s town and city centres. Places like Hanley which suffer from binge drinking issues must not only have the causes addressed through stronger licensing but also the effects through mobile courts.
It could mean individuals are arrested, charged and justice dispensed within the hour in many cases in specific hotspot areas. Using Government’s plans to allow the police rather than the Crown Prosecution Service to prosecute more incidents directly with the courts will also speed the system up.
Restorative justice, bringing the victims of crime and those responsible together in an appropriate way has proven to have significant success both in closure terms and curbing reoffending in specific cases.
That and the greater use of public community payback will reinforce the fact that low level crime and antisocial behaviour will not be tolerated and have consequences for the perpetrators.
A MODERN TWIST TO THE ‘VILLAGE BOBBY’
Recruit 200 Special Constables across Staffordshire on a targeted geographic basis so they’d police only the community they live in instead of being in a pool where officers are sent far and wide.
Local people with local knowledge trained as Specials and policing part time with a recognisable and trusted face as well as a physical stake in their area.
It’s about making sure that policing is highly visible and once again rooted in the community for the community.
A NEW YOUNG POLICE CADETS SERVICE FOR STAFFORDSHIRE
Funded, not by the public purse, but via a new Corporate Social Responsibility Fund for Staffordshire I have been talking to business about.
It wouldn’t be for recruitment to the police but would be a uniformed service for 10 to 17 year olds to build their confidence, instil self belief and good citizenship.
It might also be used as alternative to some lower level community sentences for younger people who end up on the wrong side socially or criminally.
REAL TIME INFORMATION FOR VICTIMS OF CRIME AND ANTI SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR
Too often the victims of crime, particularly low level incidents, end up fighting the working shift system to get up to date and new information on the progress, or otherwise, of the crime they reported.
Even the organisations supporting victims say that obtaining up to date information is a massive draw on resources which could be used in directly supporting individuals. Staffordshire Police Case Tracker would be a new Web based system which takes information about the status of police investigations which is entered internally anyway and provide it in an appropriate and easy to understand way on a secure website.
Only the victim relating to the case or their support worker (with permission) would have access to the real time information. A simple solution which addresses a big problem for many victims of crime or anti social behaviour.