Download the full outcome
Detail of outcome
This document sets out the main themes highlighted in the consultation and the government’s response to the issues raised. Given the level of support for these proposals, together with the significant flexibility that they offer to police forces, we will bring forward legislation as part of the forthcoming Policing and Crime Bill to bring these reforms into effect.
The office of constable is central to the delivery of policing in England and Wales. The reforms set out in this document are intended to enhance this. We propose for the first time setting out in a single piece of legislation the core list of powers that will only be available to those that hold the office of constable. Beyond these core powers, we want police forces to have a more flexible workforce and we will, subject to key safeguards, enable chief officers to designate other police powers to staff. This will enable police officers to focus on the most important roles; roles that only they can carry out.
We also want to enhance the role of volunteers. We are consulting on ending the anomaly whereby volunteers can either have all of the powers of the constable, as a special; or have none of the powers, as a police support volunteer. We will instead allow volunteers to mirror the roles played by police staff, for example as community support officers.
These reforms will help this government to finish the job of police reform. These changes will take further the process started in the Police Reform Act 2002, which first introduced the PCSO role and the concept that police staff, as well as police officers, could have enforcement powers. They will give chief constables greater flexibility in meeting the demands on police forces at a time when funding policing remains a significant challenge.
How to respond
The closing date for response to this consultation is 31 October 2015.
You can respond via email to: SpecialConstabularyEnquiries@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk
Or you can write to us at:
Complementary Policing Team - Police Integrity and Powers Unit
6th Floor NW
2 Marsham Street