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Nottinghamshire Police chief responds to HMICFRS report

Nottinghamshire Police was inspected by His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services between the end of 2023 and January 2024.

The inspection is the latest independent assessment of how the force is performing against the PEEL criteria used to assess forces in England and Wales. This stands for police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy.

While Nottinghamshire Police awaits the full findings of the assessment, HMICFRS has informed the force of two accelerated causes for concern.

The inspectorate has advised that the force needs to improve ‘how it manages and carries out effective investigations to make sure that victims get the support they need’.

The second cause for concern from HMICFRS relates to their observation that the force doesn’t have adequate processes, planning or governance arrangements in place to monitor performance or identify where improvements are required.

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Nottinghamshire Police has seen success in its performance around its rate at answering 999 and 101 calls. These rates are amongst the best in the country and the force is also within the top quartile of forces nationally for achieving positive outcomes for victims.

Chief Constable Kate Meynell says:

“As Chief Constable I recognise the serious nature of the HMICFRS findings. I have taken urgent action to address the immediate concerns raised and have ensured that all of the initial recommendations that relate to our investigations and support for victims have been completed.

“I have tasked a dedicated team of detectives to carry out a thorough review of all of the crimes identified by HMICFRS. This review has found that all of these crimes are being managed by specially trained officers, with supervisors overseeing the progress we make. The review did identify that in 2% of cases there was not an update from a supervisor recorded on our system, but this does not mean there was no investigative activity being undertaken.

“Victims of crime are at the heart of everything that we do. The team have reviewed all of the cases identified to ensure that victims of crime are receiving regular updates and that these are being correctly recorded. Although the frequency of updates for victims is not specified in the national Code of Practice for Victims of Crime, our target is to provide updates for victims every three weeks. We achieve this in 95% of cases, but we are not complacent and will focus our efforts to improve in this area.

“I have prioritised and invested in our leadership programme for line managers and supervisors to ensure that these officers and staff receive extensive training and support to perform their roles to the highest standard. This programme is consistent with the standards set by the College of Policing and will ensure that our people have the skills and knowledge required to enhance our supervision of investigations and oversight of the care we provide to victims.  I have also increased the number of supervisors we have overseeing our response teams.

“In relation to our processes and managing our demand, one of my first actions as Chief Constable was to commission a review of how we operate, and this review has started a significant piece of work to improve our governance and operating model.  Delivering a carefully managed change to the operating model involves a significant period of time to deliver whilst continuing to respond to the communities we serve.  During this time the force has also been working hard to reach and maintain our uplift in officer numbers.

“I have overseen changes to help us meet our demand and ensure that we provide the best possible service to communities. These include some operational changes to make sure our officers are in the right places, at the right time, and a new process for how we safeguard victims of domestic abuse. However, we do need to improve further in this area and we are working with the National Police Chiefs’ Council and the College of Policing on this.

“I fully acknowledge that our force has work to do to achieve our vision of being an outstanding force that we can all be proud of. I am fully committed to working with HMICFRS and we will work tirelessly to address their concerns and deliver the best possible service for the people of Nottinghamshire.”

• Read next: Nottinghamshire Police moved into ‘enhanced monitoring’ by watchdog over governance and investigation failures

 

The force records approximately 104,000 crimes per annum.

The force currently has 11,017 open crime investigations.

For the crimes it was tasked to review the force identified that there was no update from a supervisor in 227 cases – this equates to around 2% of all its current open investigations.

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