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Police: Senior Officers

Volume 696: debated on Thursday 15 November 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they have any plans to consider management of the careers of senior police officers in England and Wales along the lines of systems employed in Sweden and elsewhere. [HL177]

Unlike in the United Kingdom, the police service in Sweden is a national force, reporting to a national police board and to parliament and ministers. The educational programmes of the Swedish National Police Academy are formed in accordance with the directives issued by the Government and parliament. It is thus a more centralised system than that which exists than in this country.

The tripartite arrangement for policing in the UK means that the Swedish model is not one that would be suitable for direct import here, although the National Policing Improvement Agency has been working with the Swedish National Policing Agency and police from other EU countries in this area.

Putting aside the predetermined career path that the rank structure imposes, there currently is no mandated development path for police officers. However, at the national level a number of mechanisms exist to assist senior police officers in their career development. Importantly, these also assure the quality of senior police leadership.