26 March 2019
Policing needs a truly-independent review free from any political interference, says National Chair John Apter in response to a parliamentary motion on bringing back a Royal Commission.
On Tuesday 26, Stephen Lloyd MP made a proposal to Policing Minster Nick Hurd for a Royal Commission on Policing which would look at the entire structure, function, roles and funding of the service.
Mr Lloyd argued “policing is too important for politics” and that the public will be grateful for the new approach – which “wouldn’t cost a lot of time of money” - whilst improving demand and capacity.
However, Mr Hurd was unpersuaded and feels there is no need for a Royal Commission - which would be “outdated and static for such a dynamic situation we are in” - stating the Government can handle the situation itself.
Responding to the debate, PFEW Chair John Apter, said: “For twenty years, we have been calling for a Royal Commission to enable a detailed review into all aspects of policing; including how to deliver policing, structure, funding and importantly, what the public want and expect from their police service.
“Successive governments have said a Royal Commission would cost too much and take too long, but that is just an excuse for continual piecemeal reform which does nothing to help the service the public receive.
“Policing has been kicked around like a political football for far too long and we now need to stop and decide as country exactly what we want from our police service; a Royal Commission would do exactly that.”
The last Royal Commission on police was appointed in 1960 following two high-profile scandals involving borough police forces – exposing problems in the relationship between the chief constable and watch committee of each borough, and disputes between central and local government over the control of local forces.
It also recommended the optimum size for a police force was more than 500 members, with the police area having a population of at least 250,000.