Police disciplinary hearings should be ‘quicker, slicker and cheaper’ Policing Minister Damian Green said today (25 June) as he announced a consultation into improving how officer misconduct is dealt with.
Speaking at the National Policing Professional Standards Conference in Chester, Damian Green said the eight-week consultation with police and policing organisations, which starts on Monday 1 July, will consider ways to speed up police appeals tribunals and stop them becoming a ‘costly arms race’ between lawyers.
Minister for Policing and Criminal Justice the Rt Hon Damian Green said:
The public need to be confident that every officer they come into contact with is worthy of the trust placed in them.
Whilst the vast majority of police officers are honest and professional, where allegations of wrongdoing are made they must be investigated quickly, openly and effectively.
Police appeals tribunals should be convened within two months of an appeal being lodged but in some forces they take more than six months – often because of the unavailability of senior officers to hold the hearings. The consultation proposes streamlining the composition of the tribunals to make them more efficient and independent.
Mr Green added:
The Home Secretary has already announced a package of measures to tackle misconduct and promote a more open culture in the police.
This new consultation builds on that work and will make the disciplinary system quicker, slicker and cheaper.
Other proposals being considered include restricting legal representation at the hearings to cut costs and bring disciplinary arrangements into line with those of police staff, civil servants and the private sector.