Sarah Russell: I’ll ensure victims receive the support they deserve
Labour’s candidate for Leicestershire’s first elected police and crime commissioner has set out the policies she hopes will win her the job.
Councillor Sarah Russell is highlighting the more widespread promotion of basic crime prevention measures, reducing reoffending by putting extra emphasis on treatment of drug or alcohol addicts.
She has also pledged to maintain neighbourhood policing.
She said: “I do think people are starting to get what this is all about and we’ve had good numbers of people coming to the hustings we have had so far.
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“They have come along to listen to us and to decide who to vote for or, perhaps, whether to vote.
“The police do an incredible job, but there are so many practical crime prevention measures we can promote, including better home security and even something as simple as urging people to form Neighbourhood Watch groups.
“But also we have to look more at reducing re-offending, including looking at the work we do with people who commit crime because they are addicted to drugs or alcohol – they make up 50 per cent of people in the criminal justice system.”
Her five pledges are as follows:
To protect community policing – ensuring the force continues to have visible local teams who know their patch and local people’s priorities.
To promote crime prevention measures – helping communities protect themselves, reducing crime and the fear of crime.
To be accessible to the public – by ensuring people have regular opportunities to question her and hold her to account.
To prioritise victim services – ensuring victims of crime receive the support they need, listening to and communicating effectively with them.
To form partnerships with organisations such as the Probation Service, the NHS and local councils to stop duplication of services and direct resources more effectively.
The police commissioner, who will be paid £75,000 will replace the police authority, which has set police budgets, appointed senior officers and scrutinised the force’s performance.
Control over operational matters will remain with the chief constable.
The Conservatives are represented by former Air Chief Marshal, Sir Clive Loader.
Leicester community worker and businessman Suleman Nagdi is standing as an independent.
DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION FOR THE CANDIDATES?
People in England and Wales will be able to vote for police and crime commissioners (PCCs) for the first time on Thursday, November 15.
The PCCs will replace police authorities, which have traditionally set police budgets, appointed senior officers and scrutinised their force’s performance.
The commissioners will not be able to interfere in operational matters. Elections will take place every four years.
The position comes with a £75,000 salary.
The Leicester Mercury is inviting readers to send us the questions they would like the three candidates to answer. We will print the responses next week.
Send your questions to to Ciaran Fagan, Crime Correspondent, Leicester Mercury, St George Street, Leicester, LE1 9FQ, or e-mail: email@example.com
The Highfields Community Centre, Melbourne Road, Highfields, Leicester was due to host a question-and-answer session with the three candidates today, from 7pm to 9pm.