‘Having failed to resolve these differences prior to the Act, as well as a myriad of other problems, the realities of integration are now coming to the fore, while the baton has passed to the SPA. Charged with providing assurance and oversight, the Authority has some exceptionally hard decisions ahead on what is a fiendishly complex project, against a backdrop of rising demand on police services and increasing cost pressure.’
‘To reiterate, our concerns in no way reflect the abilities, experience or skills of Hogg, or other Scottish Government secondees. The issue is the independence of the SPA and the fact that the water between police and government now looks even muddier’.
‘The question now seems to be why are these fundamental issues of governance and accountability only now are being exposed, and with such serious consequences? This debate should have occurred before a centralised police force was established four years ago’.
‘The decision to integrate BTP in Scotland may be political; however, the merger is a matter of public safety and public money, and the Government has a duty to demonstrate that it is not taking undue risks with either’. Foremost expert backs calls for merger to be put on hold.
“Policing 2026 is not an officer reduction exercise, nor is at a ‘time-bomb’. Clearly Scottish policing is facing an eye-watering deficit: around £200 million by 2020/21 at the latest estimate. Still, putting it dryly, there are probably less painful ways to cut costs than devising and negotiating a ten-year national policing strategy.” A welcome shift to forward-looking, evidence-based policing strategy.
“Yet, reading the humbling stories of voluntary groups working hard to assist integration, I am shocked to see one Polish support group refer to the high suicide rate among Polish people in Scotland.” In the week of the Casey Report condemning UK governments’ failure to support intercultural social cohesion, Fay Young finds there is no room for complacency in Scotland.
The Scottish Government under the SNP is clear about its ultimate goal but sometimes confused about what are the best policies – and the powers to use. Women for Independence have proposed taking prison off the menu in the lower courts and won strong backing. Will ministers seize this clear game changer?
The Violence Reduction Unit’s Rapper in Residence celebrates recent headlines claiming Glasgow is no longer Britain’s most violent city. He urges communities to reject the myth that violence is something to be proud of and embrace the city’s new image.
Police Scotland is seeking to reinstate non-statutory stop and search of children for alcohol despite new laws abolishing it. But new SG evidence, published here for the first time, suggests that under-age drinking offences have fallen dramatically: any new powers would be wholly unwarranted.