Involving Our Communities
An important role of the Police Authority is to consult with people in West Yorkshire about the policing services provided by West Yorkshire Police.
The potential value of community consultation emerged from Lord Scarman’s Inquiry into inner city disturbances in the early 1980s.
The subsequent Section 106 of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (now repealed by Section 96 of the Police Act 1996) stated that arrangements shall be made in each police area for obtaining the views of local people about matters concerning local policing and to obtain their co-operation in the prevention of crime.
The requirement for Police Authorities to consult with the public is included in the following Acts
Section 7 of the Police Act 1996
This Act reinforces that before determining any local policing objective, a Police Authority shall consult the Chief Constable for the area and consider any views obtained under Section 96 of the Police Act 1996)
Section 8 of the Police Act 1996
There is a requirement for every Police Authority to produce an annual Policing Plan which includes the need to indicate the consultation that has taken place within the local community and within the Force in the identification and prioritisation of local objectives.
Section 6 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998
This Act places a duty on Local Authorities and the Chief Officer of Police jointly to formulate crime and disorder strategies in each Authority area in England and Wales. The pre-requisite to join up a strategy is a crime and disorder audit and a requirement to consult widely in the local community to obtain views on both the problems they face and their priorities for crime reduction activity.
Equality Act 2010
In summary, those subject to the equality duty must, in the exercise of their functions, have due regard to the need to:
- eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Act;
- advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not; and
- foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.