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Police: Standards

Volume 487: debated on Monday 26 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to her statement of 4 December 2008 on police targets, Official Report, column 158, which targets have been removed. (250109)

[holding answer 22 January 2009]: The Policing Green Paper—From the Neighbourhood to the National: Policing Our Communities Together—stated that

“with one exception the Home Office will neither set nor maintain top-down numerical targets for individual police forces—a significant gesture of trust and reduction of bureaucracy.”

The Government have already removed the targets for the police that concerned frontline officers the most, such as the target to bring more offences to justice. Following the Green Paper announcement, the Government have removed centrally set, top-down targets for police forces relating to efficiency, and the 10-year race employment targets come to an end at 31 March 2009, when a final report against a centrally set progression target will also be made.

Going forward, we will expect police authorities to set their own local targets on these issues.

The Government have also set multi-agency targets for Local Criminal Justice Boards (LCJBs) for 2008-09 on enforcement (including fail to appear (FTA) warrant enforcement, community penalty breach enforcement and licence recall), asset recovery and the Persistent Young Offender pledge. LCJBs are multi-agency partnerships which include the police, and LCJBs' targets measure jointly the performance of the police and their partner agencies. In response to the Policing Green Paper, there will be no top-down numerical targets for LCJBs for 2009-10. Instead, LCJBs have been asked to set their own local targets according to local priorities and circumstances.

The one remaining target the Government will set for police forces will be on confidence that they and their partners are tackling the crime and antisocial behaviour issues that matter most locally.