Herts Police should do more to protect vulnerable people in St Albans district, says inspectorate

06:00 26 February 2016

Herts Police and Crime Commissioner David Lloyd

Herts Police and Crime Commissioner David Lloyd

Archant

There are calls for more to be done to protect vulnerable people from harm in the St Albans district, following an Ofsted-style report on the effectiveness of the Herts Police.

While Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary’s (HMIC) report on the local force rated its overall performance as ‘good’, improvement was needed in protecting those who are vulnerable from harm, and in the way the organisation supports victims.

HM Inspector Zoe Billingham, who led the recent inspection, said: “There is an impressive dedication and commitment to protecting the most vulnerable members of the community, like children, at risk of harm and victims of domestic abuse.

“However the force needs to improve its response to missing and absent children.”

Following last Thursday’s (18) publication of the report, a spokesman for child protection charity NSPCC said: “It is concerning that frontline staff, according to HMIC, are still confused about what their responsibilities are.

“There is a real risk that Herts may not be managing effectively its investigations into missing children or working as well as it should to understand and prevent vulnerable children from repeatedly going missing.

“This may result in vital opportunities to protect vulnerable children or identify a potential risk of sexual exploitation, to go missing.”

Local district and county councillor Chris White, Lib Dem candidate for Police and Crime Commissioner, said it was ‘vital’ there was improved clarity over who had responsibility for missing children, and that more work was done with local authorities and others in relation to child sexual exploitation.

He called upon Herts Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) David Lloyd to ensure the HMIC recommendations were carried out, and “that there is an adequate budget” to improve this area.

Detective Chief Inspector Kay Lancaster, of Herts Police, said that while the force had a dedicated missing persons unit, the HMIC report suggested more needed to be done to understand the background of those repeatedly going missing, for example young people living in children’s homes.

PCC David Lloyd said he was pleased that the force’s performance had been rated ‘good’ overall, but he was concerned that more needed to done to protect vulnerable people.

He said extra resources had been invested into specialist services which supported those who were vulnerable, and that improvements would be made in this area of policing.

The way police stop and search people was another area needing improvement, but officers’ Taser usage was deemed “fair and proportionate”.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Herts Advertiser visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Herts Advertiser staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Herts Advertiser account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

12:00
Broken's leading lady Morjana Alaoui ('Martyrs')

Deepest, darkest Shepherd’s Bush is hosting “FrightFest” for the Horror Channel, featuring the world premiere of a psychological thriller produced by a St Albans movie fanatic.

1 Mount Pleasant

Residents and objectors cheered after councillors on a planning committee turned down a new conservation area housing scheme close to their homes.

Yesterday, 17:00
St Albans City Hospital

The future of hospital services in West Herts are under the spotlight with a series of proposals going out for consultation until the middle of next month.

Yesterday, 16:46
Two cars collided in Flamstead at about 9.30am today (Tuesday)

A man was hospitalised with head injuries after a crash in Flamstead this morning (Tuesday).

Education

Thursday, August 18, 2016
A-level results

Students at Nicholas Breakspear Catholic School in St Albans have expressed their joy at their A level results after gaining a place at their first university choice.

Read more

St Albans Sinkhole News

Wednesday, August 17, 2016
Bernards Heath playground

Uncertainty over the long-term stability of a playground near St Albans’ sinkhole has resulted in the site being temporarily closed for further investigations.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the The Herts Advertiser e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Most read stories

Local business directory

Hertfordshire's trusted business finder
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Most commented stories

Herts Most Wanted Herts Business Awards