A very brief post this, I just wanted to take a moment to welcome Bob Jones to his new role as Police & Crime Commissioner (PCC) for the West Midlands following his winning of yesterday’s PCC election.
You may have noticed that this is the first time I’ve mentioned the PCC elections in a few weeks, not because I’d forgotten they were taking place but rather due to a word that I’d never heard of previously called ‘purdah’.
What ‘purdah‘ means, if like me you didn’t know, is that there is a period leading up to an election during which certain people have to avoid doing anything that could unduly influence the course of the election. For us officers, it meant we couldn’t really mention it at all.
Anyhoo, with purdah now concluded with the announcement of the results, allow me to tell you a little about our new PCC.
Mr. Jones is a Labour party councillor from the Wolverhampton area. He was a long standing member of the former Police Authority and was recently awarded a CBE for ‘services to policing’.
His key election pledges were to:
- Protect neighbourhood policing from further government cuts
- Retain Police and Community Support Officers
- Oppose the privatisation of core policing services
- Fight for a fair funding deal for the West Midlands Police Service
- Set up local policing boards in each area to ensure local people set local priorities
- Put victims first by ensuring that funding for Victim Support is safeguarded
- Steer young people away from crime and gang culture by encouraging the police to work with schools, local councils and voluntary organizations
Mr Jones will take office on the 22nd of this month and will have responsibility for setting the Force’s budget, defining objectives and holding the Chief Constable to account.
As you’ll have no doubt read and be expecting at least some reference to in anything published about the PCC elections, voters were perhaps a little shy with the turnout in the West Midlands being 12% but so it goes – not really sure what to say about that one.
For more information on the PCC elections, take a look at my blog on the subject from a few months ago.
There’s also a dedicated website for the West Midlands PCC post which you can browse here.
P.S. Struggled with an appropriate song for this blog as there are few, if any, tracks that reference the PCC elections in any meaningful way. As it is I went for the Counting Crows song, one I don’t much like to be honest but needs must…