Agenda and draft minutes

Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Panel - Wednesday, 12th October, 2016 2.30 pm

Venue: North Somerset Council, Rooms 8, 9, 10 Castlewood Offices, Tickenham Road, Clevedon, BS21 6FW

Contact: Shana Johnson 

No. Item


Apologies for absence


ApologieswerereceivedfromCouncillors Brett, Bown, Drew, Shelford and Weston



Public Forum


Statements or questions should be e-mailed to, or sent to Bristol City Council, City Hall College Green, Bristol, BS1 5TR (for the attention of Patricia Jones). Statements must be received no later than 12.00 noon on the working day prior to the meeting. For the purposes of this meeting, your statement should be submitted by noon on 11th October. Questions must be received no later than 3 clear working days before the meeting - 5pm on 6th October.




Declarations of Interest




Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 313 KB

To agree the minutes of the meeting held on the 16th June 2016 as a correct record.


Resolved – that the Minutes of the meeting held on the  16th June 2016 be confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.



Chairman's Business


The Chairman raised concerns about the host authority support to the Panel going forward and requested an update from Bristol City Council on the situation.



Panel Response to the Commissioner's Annual Report pdf icon PDF 77 KB

Additional documents:


The Panel welcomed the Commissioner’s response to their comments.  The Commissioner confirmed that the Panel’s response, and key issues highlighted, had fed into the revised priorities in the Police and Crime Plan.  Going forward it would be helpful to ensure that annual report timeline and refresh of the Police and Crime Panel were aligned to ensure input from the Panel in the process.

The Panel re-iterated concerns about Cyber Crime.  The Panel noted that
Cyber crime was dealt with by the centrally operated fraud unit, not locally and this led to a disconnect in terms of feedback to victims.  PCCs have been critical of the Agency’s performance for a number of years and there would be closer work with local constabularies to help address this.  There needed to be  greater links nationally, regionally and locally.  The Commissioner confirmed that cyber crime was addressed in the Police and Crime Plan under the ‘vulnerable people’ priority.  It was acknowledged that there needed to be more prevention and education in partnership with other agencies to enable people to protect themselves.  80% of cyber crime was preventable.  The Panel also emphasised the importance of turning information into intelligence and re-assuring people who report crimes that the information they provided would be used to assist in crime detection.  There also needed to be more education of the public as to what actually happens when a cyber crime is reported. 

The Panel also raised issues about neighbourhood policing and concerns about how for example PCSO and Neighbourhood Watch intelligence could be effectively reported and used by the police locally.  It was also important that communities/individuals knew how to link into local groups such as Neighbourhood Watch.




Scrutiny of the Police and Crime Plan pdf icon PDF 56 KB

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The Commissioner thanked the Panel for their input and in particular Cllr Asher Craig who had worked closely with the Commissioner’s office.
The Panel welcomed the draft Plan and report of the Link Member.  The Panel was pleased to see that key issues raised in its’ response to your Annual report had been reflected in the Plan priorities. The Panel approved the draft Plan subject to the following recommendations and observations:

-          The Panel was disappointed that cyber-crime did not have greater emphasis in the Plan and would like this issue to feature more prominently, including actions to ensure intelligence shared is actioned on and clearer communication with members of the public on whether the police are able to take action on reported incidents.

-          The Panel welcomed the priority to strengthen and improve local policing teams and in particular actions to prevent burglaries, prosecute more offenders and recover more property and proceeds of crime. The Panel emphasised the importance of improving investigative standards and would expect to see an improvement in performance in this area.

-          The Panel reiterated its previous comments about the need for strong and empowering leadership in order to ensure a highly skilled, well-informed and motivated work force and would like to see a greater emphasis on this in the Plan including how this will be measured.

-          The Panel strongly supported measures to ensure a more diverse workforce to adequately represent the diverse communities the Constabulary serves. 

-          The Panel requested that the Commissioner consider extending the categories of Hate Crime to include Misogyny.  The Panel noted that the Commissioner would be maintaining a watching brief over approaches in other parts of the country, e.g Nottingham and would request a further report back during the next year on these approaches and whether they could be effective locally. The Panel also supported further information/campaigns to help the public understand what constitutes a Hate Crime.

-          The Panel emphasised the importance of particular areas to support delivery of the plan, including capability with respect to the Strategic Policing Requirement, effectiveness of community engagement to support policing activity (e.g. the ‘Watch’ schemes), and multi-agency data sharing in civil cases.

-          The Panel acknowledged the importance of a strong multi-agency approach to delivering the Plan, particularly in response to the statement that 86% of police activity relates to non-crime matters (including for example missing people and mental health).  The Panel supported the extension of known good practice in this area.

-          The Panel fully supported the Commissioner in making a case for fairer funding through current Home Office consultation on the future police funding formula.



Scrutiny of performance/delivery against the Police and Crime Plan - Burglary pdf icon PDF 117 KB


Burglary had been a priority since 2012 and would continue to be a priority.  The Commissioner re-iterated that she was disappointed and frustrated about performance and had made it clear to Chief Constable that things had to change.

The Panel noted the presentation by on initiatives to improve performance.  During discussion the following issues were raised/highlighted:

-          additional resources had been taken on to impact on performance  but it was also about upskilling

-          There was lobbying of government to change legislation around ‘cash for gold’ outlets

-          The force needed to be trained in Investigation and there needed to be effective leadership systems to ensure this would be enabled

-          There should not be a variance of how burglaries were dealt with across the force area

-          Addressing re-offending was key and this had not been aided by changes to the Probation Service and underfunding

-          Restorative justice, putting offenders with victims was also important to addressing re-offending.  Housing and employment were also crucial and work with other partners and the voluntary sector would be vital

-          It was key to make sure that information and intelligence got to officers on the ground – social media was also being used as an effective source of information

-          The public also needed to be confident that reporting would actually lead to  convictions

-          Improvements were being made to the 101 line and it was acknowledged the call handling performance was not good enough.  There was also an issue about ensuring people used the number for the right purpose.  There were too many repeat calls and  also a significant of calls which related to other issues and a significant number were from people needing other services e.g. mental health support

-          Improvements were being made to the way crime reports could be tracked on line and there would be performance reporting on the number of abandoned calls.



Commissioner's Update Report pdf icon PDF 69 KB


The Panel received an update from the Commissioner which highlighted the following issues:

-          Advice had been given to officers on mental health legislation and the use of Section 136 – there would be continued monitoring of application of this legislation.

-          Partnership work was ongoing to tackle child exploitation and the development of joint approaches.

-           There wold be a continued emphasis on developing the investigation capacity of neighbourhood teams.

-          The Community Action Fund plan had been delayed until 1st January

-          Overtime levels were still too high and similarly absence   the well-being of officers was being looked at in order to tackle this issue .

-          Assaults on officers was a continuing problem and a 7 point plan was being developed  and 1:1 support to help recovery after such incidents.

-          It was noted that illegal raves had been a big issue in the summer and clear communications had been sent out which had been welcomed by residents and communities – the use of social media had been particularly effective.  The illegal raves also posed a significant health and safety threat due to derelict locations in which they were held.

-          It was noted that there was a dedicated sex liaison officer who was working closely with partners and sharing intelligence, in particular around trafficking and modern slavery.  There were opportunities through voluntary agencies for women to talk to other people than police officers.



Tri-Force Collaboration Programme

To receive a verbal update.


The Panel received an update and noted that there would be regular reports to the Panel going forward.



Link Member Reports


The Panel noted an update from Andy Sharman – Independent Member and Link Member for Business Crime.


Work Programme Report pdf icon PDF 75 KB


Members noted the Panel Work Programme for 2016/17 in line with its core statutory responsibilities.


It was noted that a briefing from the Chief Constable would be deferred until the 15th December 2016.




Standing Complaints Report pdf icon PDF 47 KB

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The Panel considered a report of the Chief Executive (OPCC) providing an oversight of all complaints made against the Commissioner.


It was noted that there had been one complaint (31/08/16/ 16185) since the meeting in June and this was live.  The outcome to be sought was Informal resolution by way of an explanation and apology


Resolved – that the report be noted.



Date of next meeting

Thursday 15th December 2016 at 11.00am (Weston Town Hall, Walliscote Grove Road, BS23 1UJ.


(Training 21st October and 23rd November)


15th December 2016 10.30- 1pm



Exclusion of the Press and Public


Resolved - that under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting for the consideration of the following item, on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Part I of Schedule 12A to the Act (as amended).



Complaint Update


(Exempt paragraph 1 – information relating to an individual)

The Panel was briefed on a complaint which was upheld by the Independent Police Complaints Commission following an appeal by the complainant.