The Policing and Crime Act received Royal Assent on 31 January 2017.
The Policing and Crime Act 2017 further reforms policing and enables important changes to the governance of fire and rescue services.
The changes will build capability, improve efficiency, increase public confidence and further enhance local accountability.
The main provisions will:
place a duty on police, fire and ambulance services to work together and enable police and crime commissioners to take on responsibility for fire and rescue services where a local case is made
reform the police complaints and disciplinary systems to ensure that the public have confidence in their ability to hold the police to account, and that police officers will uphold the highest standards of integrity
further support the independence of HM Inspectorate of Constabulary and ensure that it is able to undertake end-to-end inspections of the police
enable chief officers to make the most efficient and effective use of their workforce by giving them the flexibility to confer a wider range of powers on police staff and volunteers (while for the first time specifying a core list of powers that may only be exercised by warranted police officers)
increase the accountability and transparency of the Police Federation for England and Wales by extending its core purpose to cover the public interest and making it subject to the Freedom of Information Act 2000
reform pre-charge bail to stop people remaining on bail for lengthy periods without independent judicial scrutiny of its continued necessity
stop the detention in police cells of children and young people under 18 who are experiencing a mental health crisis (and restrict the circumstances when adults can be taken to police stations) by reforming police powers under sections 135 and 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983
amend the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984, including to ensure that 17-year-olds who are detained in police custody are treated as children for all purposes, and to increase the use of video link technology
amend the Firearms Acts, including to better protect the public by closing loopholes that can be exploited by criminals and terrorists
make it an offence to possess pyrotechnic articles at qualifying musical events
reform the late night levy to make it easier for licensing authorities to implement and put cumulative impact policies on a statutory footing
better protect children and young people from sexual exploitation by ensuring that relevant offences in the Sexual Offences Act 2003 cover the live streaming of images of child sex abuse
increase the maximum sentence from 5 to 10 years’ imprisonment for those convicted of the most serious cases of stalking and harassment
confer an automatic pardon on deceased individuals convicted of certain consensual gay sexual offences which would not be offences today, and on those persons still living who have had the conviction disregarded under the provisions of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012