With only a week to go we look forward with some excitement and anticipation to the introduction of the new operational policing model from next Monday February 9, 2015. This transformation is the latest in a series of on-going changes in response to reducing budgets and changing public expectation and demand. This new way of working will allow the teams based in our communities to dedicate their time to working closely with neighbourhoods and partners to resolve issues at a local level. Read the full article here.
I have been hugely impressed with the efforts that many of our unsung colleagues have put into the change work. I saw the Resource Planning Team to thank them for the massive effort that they are making to update duties, correlate flexible working patterns, and ensure that we have our people working the right duties to make local communities safer. Colleagues in IT, finance and estates have moved mountains to ensure that we are ready to go. Transport, supported by the Change Team themselves, will make sure that the fleet is in the right place, and good to go on 9th. I am very proud of the efforts that are being made; thank you!
On Tuesday I met with a number of Chiefs and the Chief HMI in London. This was a frank and open discussion around current challenges, and the relationship with the newly expanding HMI team. I spent time with Sir Tom Winsor and his senior team, including our lead HMI Zoe Billingham, to discuss proposed inspections for the year ahead that include productivity, demand management, CSE and serious and organised crime. These are all areas that we are working hard on, and which came up as the PCC and I spoke with members of the public at Market Harborough at our latest ‘What Matters To You Roadshow’.
We also talked about the budget challenge ahead. You will be aware that at Thursday’s meeting of the Police and Crime Panel, it was agreed to raise council taxes by 1.99%, this is an increase of 7p per week which will raise an additional £1 million for policing. The Panel, who hold the PCC to account, asked lots of relevant questions about the work that we are doing to protect local communities. Read the full article here.
I also chaired the National Mental Health Forum, where I continued to drive forward our work around Mental Health. As mentioned in last week’s blog our good work nationally continues to be praised but I want to help improve how we and our partners deal with incidents involving mental health. This includes working with EMAS, our response to Section 136 of the Mental Health Act and our support to others as they help the vulnerable.
The week ended at Hamilton College with a charity football match (yes, the ball is a strange shape!) on behalf of the Lord Mayor’s Charity Appeal. Leicester City MPs vs Leicester Councillors. This charity event was organised by Silver Star Diabetes campaigning for diabetes awareness. I was part of the winning MP’s team bolstered by Keith Vaz MP, former West Ham triallist ACC Phil Kay, X Factor winner Sam Bailey and Dorothy the Diabetes Duck! We eventually won 13-12, thanks to the judicious use of a subs bench including many Leicester City Youth Squad members! The Mercury website has footage of us all in ‘action’!
Continuing with supporting others, this Thursday 5th February, is Time to Talk Day. Across the country schools, communities and workplaces are planning to take 5 minutes to have a conversation about mental health and wellbeing. Time to Change is a charity that started in 2007 they campaign to improve public attitudes towards people with mental health problems. Please take time to have a discussion with colleagues and family or friends throughout the day.