A 5-Minute Guide to the Police and Crime Commissioner elections
PUBLISHED: 09:27 31 October 2012 | UPDATED: 12:26 02 November 2012
On November 15 the first ever election for a Police and Crime Commissioner in Kent is being held.
Here's a quick guide to what it's all about.
Every police force area in England and Wales (except London) will have a PCC - a paid role - whose responsibility it will be to ensure community needs are met and improve local relationships. They will do this via consulting with the public, monitoring the performance of the police, appointing (and dismissing, if necessary) the Chief Constable, setting the police budget and publishing an annual report. Shortly after their election to office, the PCC must produce a Police and Crime Plan outlining their objectives by policing. While the PCC will hold the police force to account, the PCC role will be held to account by a Police and Crime Panel. Every year the position of PCC will come up for election.
The PCC position replaces the Kent Police Authority after the Government raised concerns about the police authorities’ perceived lack of accountability to the communities they serve. The new position is directly elected by the public.
How to vote?
The elections are using the supplementary vote system which means voters can select their first and second choice of candidates. If you have registered to vote, a poll card will be delivered to your door detailing what polling station you need to visit to vote. Polling stations will be open from 7am to 10pm.
We gave each of the six Kent candidates a space to voice what matters to them and why they think they are the best candidate.
Ann Barnes, Independent
I will keep party politics out of Kent policing. Even people who normally support a particular party tell me that they are setting that aside for this election. I will use my independence to stand up to Government against more police cuts, vital if we are to avoid becoming a ‘response only’ force. I will call ‘anti-social behaviour’ by its real name - crime. I will crack down hard on it. I will continue to find efficiency savings and invest those savings in visible community policing. I will boost rural policing using ‘mini mobile’ police stations. I will spend several days a month going to communities across Kent so people are involved in how they are policed. I will put victims of crime at the heart of my work and enable them to track progress. I will appoint a ‘youth commissioner’ to bridge the gap with our young people.
Harriet Yeo, Labour
Privatising policing is wrong and I want to make sure that the streets of Kent are safe from both criminals and G4S. Frontline policing and back office work are indivisible and allowing privatisation of one will lead to privatisation of all policing. Victims are constantly overlooked, from the Jimmy Saville cover up to the law abiding family living next to individuals constantly smoking cannabis - this must change and it is something that I am fully committed to changing. I have the experience necessary; senior management, budgetary control, an effective local/regional/national elected advocate in many roles for most of my working life and strong communication skills. Born, living and working in Kent, I am the best PCC candidate for Kent.
Steve Uncles, English Democrats
I’m a Kentishman and have lived in Dartford for over 20 years. I am married to Louise with two teenage children. Currently I manage a Complex Healthcare Contract with a value of £50m per annum and I have previously worked for the MoD, BBC and private sector. My policies include “benefit of the doubt policing” i.e. in defence of property or family members; also Kent Police to receive funding per head of population equivalent to the average funding of those police in Ireland, Scotland and Wales; Kent to be declared a drug free zone; fixed police speeding cameras removed; the “political correct” culture not be tolerated in the Kent Police and to ban barbaric culture practices of animal slaughter (halal) in Kent, that involve torture.
Craig Mackinlay, Conservative
I want to bring crime down and make people feel safer. We must be tougher on criminals, tougher on crime and put the victims of crime first. I am on the side of those who live by the rules, respect others and pay their share.I shall hold police to account and ensure the views of the people of Kent are reflected in policing priorities. Victims of crime should be treated respectfully, kept informed and supported. I will introduce regular public meetings with senior police officers; and I will make myself available to all residents of Kent. I am from Kent, an experienced magistrate on the North Kent bench and an accountant by profession. I am determined to make Kent a better, safer place for all residents.
Dai Liyanage, Independent
Policing and tackling crime in Kent and Medway should be kept out of party political hands; I am the only true independent and will seek out areas where precious public cash can be saved and diverted to where it’s needed – the front line of policing. I will also strengthen effective ways in which the community can play their part, like Neighbourhood Watch, Crimestoppers and the recruitment of more volunteer special police officers. To be fully effective, officers must have the right tools to aid efficiency. This means using all ways to tackle crime, like social media and smart technology. Please use your vote on November 15th to help bring peace of mind to us all.
Piers Wauchope, UKIP
I am Kent born with 27 years experience as a barrister fighting crime with officers from over 12 different forces. I have seen police practices across the country and am determined that Kent should get the best. I am now a Tunbridge Wells councillor. I am determined to restore real policing values by re-establishing the police in the community and working to ensure there are more police on the beat. My priorities are drug related crime and anti social behaviour. We need an effective crime plan to stop re-offending both for youths and young adults.
To find out more about each candidate, visit www.policecrimecommissioners.co.uk/Kent