Responding to the HMIC reports published today into police force legitimacy and leadership, APCC Chair Vera Baird QC said:
“The APCC welcomes the overall finding of these reports, the police continue to do an excellent job at a time of significant transition. Police officers and staff around the country deserve great credit for maintaining the confidence of the public. It is extremely positive to see that victims’ satisfaction with their treatment by the police remains high and overall the police forces are good at ensuring their workforces act ethically and lawfully.
“It is also encouraging to see that forces are innovating and developing their leadership teams to tackle the challenges that policing faces now and in the future.
“That said, it is important to emphasise as Chair of the APCC that Police and Crime Commissioners are very clear that any abuse of authority for sexual gain will not be tolerated. PCCs are accountable to the public for their forces. It is appalling that the power of being a police officer has been abused for sexual gratification and that must never happen again.
“If there is concern of this kind about any officer from PC through to Chief Constable, staff must feel that they can confide their concerns, in confidence and knowing that they will be supported. PCCs will now make double sure that that provision is available in every force.”