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Reflection and renewal
Taking the Police and Crime Commissioner role forward
After successive governments have deliberately focused on local accountability, the launch of the nationally-led campaign to recruit an additional 20,000 officers and the formation of the National Policing Board represents a significant pivot. However, this raises fundamental questions around the role of the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) and makes it a critical time to consider how to maximise the value of the role and gain clarity on what it can realistically be expected – and supported – to achieve.
The Police and Crime Commissioner role has many strengths and delivers value to policing. From acting as ‘the voice of the people’ and ensuring local priorities are met, to commissioning services that have transformed outcomes for victims, PCCs have had a real impact over the last eight years. Moving forward there is the potential for them to make an even greater positive contribution.
This will require greater diversity, providing PCCs with the appropriate support and tools to effectively deliver and expanding the role to allow more influence within the wider Criminal Justice System. The delay to the PCC elections, while not desirable, has effectively given the opportunity to focus on these factors.
Our insight explores five key themes and shares recommendations to help PCCs and those who lead the PCC agenda consider how to really enhance the role. The themes are:
- Who are the current PCCs and does this matter?
- How has the understanding of the PCC role changed?
- How does national governance fit with delivery of the PCC role?
- How does local accountability and variability impact the PCC role?
- How has the PCC role expanded, and is it likely to expand further?