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Thursday 08 November 2018

Home Office faces further criticism of police strategy

Home Office logoThe House of Commons Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has published its report on the Financial Sustainability of Police Forces in England and Wales. It calls for the Home Office to develop a national strategy for policing, reform the police funding formula, and make improvements in the delivery of police technology programmes.

The PAC concluded, the Home Office lacks a comprehensive picture of all the demands forces face and is unable to support forces in delivering the Policing Vision 2025, which includes its plans for digital transformation (see UK Police SITS Supplier Landscape & Market Trends). The PAC recommends the Home Office develop its own national strategy to complement Policing Vision 2025 within 12 months.

The report also highlights concerns about the 11% top-slice the Home Office takes to fund national programmes—£945m in 2018-19—stating that it was unconvinced the money was being used effectively. This includes £495m on police technology programmes, including the National Law Enforcement Data Service and the development of the Emergency Services Network (see A new strategic direction for ESN), and £175m for the Police Transformation Fund. The report concludes, projects funded by these programmes can face a ‘cliff edge’ when national funding runs out making it difficult to keep projects going locally—it calls on the Home Office to improve the delivery of these programmes and to work more closely with police forces in their development.

This report comes shortly after the Home Affairs Select Committee’s final report on ‘Policing for the Future’, which was also highly critical of the Home Office. It concluded, “Police forces’ investment in and adoption of new technology is, quite frankly, a complete and utter mess”, which has come as a result of "the complete lack of coordination and leadership on upgrading technology over very many years".

Subscribers to PublicSectorViews can find out more about how the perfect storm of fewer resources, reduced public services, new threats, and an increase in some types of traditional crime is having an impact across policing, and how technology has the potential to help forces address these challenges in UK Public Sector SITS Market Forecast Trends and Forecasts 2018.

Posted by Dale Peters at '09:15' - Tagged: funding   police   government   transformation   police   police   police   police  

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