April 4, 2023 8.00 pm This story is over 14 months old

Public confidence in Lincolnshire Police is ‘absolutely critical’

National trust has been shaken after scandals

By Local Democracy Reporter

Lincolnshire Police say it’s vital they keep the public’s confidence after controversy over other forces.

Assistant Chief Constable Diane Coulson told The Lincolnite that they want to know how the public sees their work.

Officers will be taking to the streets to ask: “How good a job is Lincolnshire Police doing?”

They are hoping to better understand the general public’s perception of the police and identify areas for improvement so they can adapt the service accordingly.

“We recognise that in the current climate, public confidence in policing is absolutely critical to what we do,” Assistant Chief Constable Diane Coulson said.

“We recognise all of the issues that have happened nationally, in terms of things that have happened in other force areas, that all impact on the public’s confidence in policing.

“Even here in Lincolnshire, albeit we are relatively crime-free area, we absolutely recognise that we still need to have the confidence of the public when we police.”

She added: “The really important thing about this, is that it’s not going to be a one-off. It’s an ongoing piece which we will review regularly so that we can start to understand the impact of different events, whether it’s in our county or whether it’s national.

“That will then enable us to respond differently in these areas and start to think about how we can do things differently to try and improve that level of confidence.”

John Horton and Clair Bond from Lincolnshire conducting the survey in Waterside Shopping Centre, Lincoln | Photo: James Turner

One case that sparked outrage and has arguably impacted the public’s trust in the police force the most is the murder of Sarah Everard.

The 33-year-old marketing executive was attacked by Metropolitan Police Officer Wayne Couzens while walking home from a friend’s house in Clapham, south London in March 2021.

Couzens later admitted to the kidnap, rape and murder of Miss Everard during his sentencing.

It’s because of this that Assistant Chief Constable Coulson believes it was “more important than ever” to launch this initiative in a bid to provide the people of Lincolnshire with reassurance.

She continued: “I think the Metropolitan Police have significant challenges in terms of the issues they’re facing.

“But, I think, irrespective of where that happened, the reality is it could have happened anywhere, which is why it is important for us as Lincolnshire Police to recognise and not sit back and say ‘that’s somebody else’s problem’.”

“We recognise this is a problem everywhere, so that’s why this work is really important, along with some of the other stuff we’ve done around violence against women and girls.”

The survey asks the public ‘How good of a job are Lincolnshire Police doing?’ | Photo: James Turner

The police also expect that a number of residents across Lincolnshire will be concerned about the recent cuts to PCSO numbers.

In March, the force confirmed that they would be reduced from 91 to 50 due to budgetary pressures, meaning some districts will have to share Neighbourhood Policing teams.

However, Mrs Coulson insists it won’t have an impact on callouts.

“We still have our response resources, our roads policing, our crime action team, and we still have all our other resources so it’s not a case of us taking policing out of certain areas. We are simply aligning our PCSCO model to what we can afford.

“It’s a complex decision-making process in order to determine what we spend our money on but also we have tried to use the best evidence we’ve got available so that we can target the PCSOs we do have in those right areas.”

As the cost of living crisis rages on there is still the question of what the future holds and whether more cuts will be needed in due time, especially as Lincolnshire Police is still the police force with the least funding in the UK.

She added: “We’re in communication with the Home Office and we know that they are looking at reviewing the spending formula, and if that comes through and provides additional funding for Lincolnshire, then that hopefully stabilises the position we’re in.

“Obviously, nationally, internationally, we don’t know what’s going to happen over the next two or three years. So, we work really closely with our financial team to make sure that we can predict as best we can over the next few years about how we can spend our money.”

Lincolnshire Police’s single-question survey can be accessed via their website and through QR codes displayed on posters and police cars.

Exciting news for MyLocal app users and The Lincolnite readers! Our latest update is now available to download from your app store and comes packed with the best local news experience you can enjoy.

Discover MyLocal: Download the app today for iPhone or Android

Download now to enjoy:

  • Revamped News Feed: Enjoy faster loading times and smoother scrolling that make catching up on local news a breeze.
  • New Play Video Feed: Dive into a dynamic video feed that brings local stories to life in a whole new way.
  • Enhanced In-App Browser: Access external links quickly and efficiently, right from the app, without any distractions.

Update your MyLocal app from your app store (version 2.73) now and start enjoying these great new features today!

P.S.: Start your MyLocal membership today to support MyLocal and The Lincolnite deliver you a better local news experience and honest journalism from across Lincolnshire.

P.P.S.: We have some huge things in the pipeline, stay tuned!

Exciting news for MyLocal app users and The Lincolnite readers! Our latest update is now available to download from your app store and comes packed with the best local news experience you can enjoy.

Discover MyLocal: Download the app today for iPhone or Android

Download now to enjoy:

  • Revamped News Feed: Enjoy faster loading times and smoother scrolling that make catching up on local news a breeze.
  • New Play Video Feed: Dive into a dynamic video feed that brings local stories to life in a whole new way.
  • Enhanced In-App Browser: Access external links quickly and efficiently, right from the app, without any distractions.

Update your MyLocal app from your app store (version 2.73) now and start enjoying these great new features today!

P.S.: Start your MyLocal membership today to support MyLocal and The Lincolnite deliver you a better local news experience and honest journalism from across Lincolnshire.

P.P.S.: We have some huge things in the pipeline, stay tuned!

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