Police and Crime Commissioner Elections

I have just received a leaflet through my letter box asking me to vote for a political candidate to be my police commissioner – I feel slightly sick, queasy and as if I am being forced to be pseudo-American.

Currently the police (keepers of the Queen’s Peace – not the Government’s or any political party’s) respond to a Police Authority. Mine has 17 members, eight local Councillors, one Elected Mayor and eight Independent Members from communities across the whole force area.  The councillors are drawn from urban and rural areas and appear to come from a variety of parties – I feel confident there is someone who will understand my concerns.

The commmissioner will in all likelihood be from the largest demographic in my force’s area and despite being required to take an “oath of independence” will have an eye to re-election by his or her supporters.  This is a reduction in representative diversity.  He or she will not be able to represent such a diversity of concerns as are found across a force area.

I was in the North East during the miner’s strike – the policed were politicised then and the situation has not recovered.  This stupid move will not change things.

The government (which has not put this particular constitutional reform to a plebicite) says we do not know our police authority members, but will know our Police Commissioner.

  1. The Police Commissioner should not be “high profile” – it smells of Robo-cop.
  2. I can find out the names of my police authority members in about 10 seconds on the internet – together with contact details for each member.
  3. By the same logic, do we abolish MPs (most people do not know the names of their MP) and replace them with elections for:
    • Finance Commissioner
    • Foreign Affairs Commissioner
    • Defence Commissioner
    • Education Commissioner
    • etc.?

Stupid, stupid, stupid – and rather sickening.

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