The Government have been clarifying the performance management framework for the police for some time, to help the police focus more effectively on the issues that concern the public. The top down numerical target which concerned frontline officers the most—to increase the total number of offences brought to justice from the 2004 Public Service Agreements (PSAs)—ceased to have effect at the end of 2007-08. The Policing Green Paper made further significant changes as part of its broader proposals for reforming the relationship between the police service, the public and the Home Office. In particular, the Government committed to a single top down target for police forces—on improving public confidence.
Centrally set efficiency and productivity targets for individual forces and authorities ceased to have effect from the publication of the Policing Green Paper (17 July 2008). Volume and value targets on cash forfeiture orders also ceased to have effect on that date. Centrally set 10-year race employment targets relating to the recruitment, retention and progression of black and minority ethnic police officers and staff come to an end on 31 March 2009, when a final report against a centrally set progression target will also be made.
Centrally set multi-agency targets for local criminal justice boards (LCJBs, on which police forces are members alongside other agencies) on enforcement (including fail to appear (FTA) warrant enforcement, community penalty breach enforcement and licence recall) and asset recovery (specifically on obtaining and enforcing confiscation orders) cease from April 2009. The Persistent Young Offenders (PYO) Pledge ended on 31 December 2008.
All of this demonstrates how we are complying with our commitment in the Green Paper to “neither set nor maintain” top down numerical targets for individual police forces with the exception of one—to raise public confidence that their local crime and antisocial behaviour priorities are being addressed.