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Kent Police graded Outstanding for Legitimacy three years in a row

Kent Police graded Outstanding for Legitimacy three years in a row
Matthew Scott, the Kent Police and Crime Commissioner, has congratulated Kent Police on being rated outstanding for its legitimacy for an unprecedented third year in a row.

Each year, Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) grades Police forces on their Efficiency, Effectiveness and Legitimacy (PEEL). On 12 December HMICFRS announced Kent Police to be outstanding at how legitimately it keeps people safe and reduces crime – as it did in both 2015 and 2016.

The PCC Mr Scott said:

‘This is fantastic news.
‘Legitimacy, or policing by consent, is vital. The more that people trust our local police force the more likely it is that victims will seek help, witnesses will come forward with evidence, and members of the community will get involved in volunteering and community safety initiatives which make us all Safer in Kent.’

HMICFRS’ legitimacy inspection found Kent Police to be outstanding at treating the people it serves with fairness and respect; good at ensuring its workforce behaves ethically and lawfully; outstanding at treating its workforce with fairness and respect – and outstanding overall.

Inspectors noted the extensive training Kent Police officers and staff receive on ethical decision-making, preventing unconscious bias, and that “force leaders continue to demonstrate an extremely positive and ethical approach to policing”. They also noted the work the PCC’s office does in helping Kent Police review complaints and by running a volunteers’ Ride Along scheme.

Mr Scott said:

‘As the national lead on mental health issues for the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners, I am especially pleased to see recognition of the work Kent Police is doing to reduce the stigma attached to mental health issues among its workforce.’

Kent Police’s Chief Constable Alan Pughsley welcomed the findings, saying:

‘To have our legitimacy graded as “outstanding” is magnificent news and an endorsement of our work to provide a first class service to the people of Kent. In spite of the challenges and demands faced by the police today, we have achieved this by focussing on the things that matter the most and doing the right thing.’

Mr Scott added:

‘It is a credit to every Kent Police officer, member of staff and volunteer that the independent inspectorate has found them to be consistently outstanding.

‘One of my duties is to hold the Chief Constable to account and I will be looking for progress in those few areas HMICFRS found for improvement. The Chief Constable and I regularly discuss issues like complaints, stop and search and recruitment at my Performance and Delivery Board.

‘I’m also looking at other ways I can monitor the force’s legitimacy, such as by making my Ride Along scheme available to the wider public. You can have your say on this idea by completing my Annual Policing Survey.’

Last month HMICFRS announced it had found Kent Police to be good in terms of efficiency. The last of its three reports, on Kent Police’s effectiveness, will be published in early 2018.

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