Jump to content
Notice Board
  • Great Deals
  • To post a recruitment query in the "Recruitment Areas" or in the "Force Specific Areas" you will require a Recruitment Pass or a Membership Package. Click HERE to read more.
  • Get your very own website designed by our in-house team at RAW Digital Media. Get 25% off all quotes using reference "RAW25" Prices start at just £199 Click HERE to read more.
  • Website hosting packages start from just £59 p/year Click HERE to read more.
Sign in to follow this  

HMIC: Police cannot continue to fill the gaps left by other agencies

Recommended Posts



Police forces are having to pick up the slack as cuts in other public services increase pressure on them, according to Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Constabulary, Sir Thomas Winsor, in a report published today.

In his annual State of Policing report, Sir Thomas draws attention to material pressures on police forces in England and Wales, which put the service under strain.

The principal pressures he highlights are as a result of:

the failures of other public services, especially in respect of children’s and adolescent mental health, too often making the police the service of first resort, long after the chances of effective prevention have been lost;

the modern tsunami of online fraud;

increased police awareness of crimes against vulnerable people, including the elderly and the sexual exploitation and abuse of children, requiring the devotion of higher specialist police resources; and

the fragmented state of police information and communications technology.

The report highlights that 18 forces require improvement in at least one of HMIC’s principal inspection themes of effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy.

Reflecting on last month’s attack in Westminster, Sir Thomas paid tribute to the bravery of police officers:

“Every day and every night, police officers do things that most of us would go out of our way to avoid. This has been illustrated to a tragically graphic extent by the Westminster terrorist attack in which one very brave police officer, PC Keith Palmer, lost his life.

“Police officers do a difficult job professionally, conscientiously and compassionately, and they deserve our grateful thanks.”

When considering the daily pressures to which the police are subject, Sir Thomas warned against the insidious creep of expecting police forces to be able to deal with the increasing demand caused by a shortage in mental health provision.

Sir Thomas said:

“The police are considered to be the service of last resort. In some areas, particularly where people with mental health problems need urgent help, the police are increasingly being used as the service of first resort. This is wrong.

“The provision of mental healthcare has reached such a state of severity that police are often being used to fill the gaps that other agencies cannot. This is an unacceptable drain on police resources, and it is a profoundly improper way to treat vulnerable people who need care and help.

“The obligation of the police is to prevent crime. This is not only because this makes society safer – both in reality and in perception – but also because it is far cheaper to prevent a crime than it is to investigate and arrest the offender after the event. The same is true of mental ill-health, which is not a crime. It is an old adage that an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure, and this is particularly true when the cure fails and an emergency intervention is required to protect the safety of an individual in distress and, often, people nearby. By the time depression or some other mental disorder has been allowed to advance to the point that someone is contemplating suicide, or engaging in very hazardous behaviour, many opportunities to intervene will have been missed by many organisations. When that intervention takes place on a motorway bridge or railway line, or when someone is holding a weapon in a state of high distress, the expense to all concerned is far higher than it should be. The principal sufferer is the person who is ill, especially when it is realised that his or her suffering could have been much less or even avoided altogether.”

Whilst there are examples of excellence found in the HMIC inspections over the last year, police leaders need to focus more on what matters most, by planning properly for the future, by ensuring that their officers and staff are properly trained, supported and equipped, and by improving the pace of improvement significantly.

The report says that the police are particularly far behind many other organisations in the way they use technology. Used well, modern technology should give the police an unprecedented ability to exchange, retrieve and analyse intelligence.

Sir Thomas summed up:

“The changing nature of crime, and the increasing opportunities to exploit the vulnerability of children and the elderly in particular, creates a greatly intensified need for police leaders to improve their efficiency and effectiveness to prevent crime and deal with offences.

“In too many cases, police leaders are still too sluggish in ensuring their plans to meet new demands are sound, particularly in the need to ensure the complete interoperability of law enforcement information and communications systems.

“For too long, a culture of insularity, isolationism and protectionism has prevented chief officers from making the most effective use of the technology available to them. The blinkers have to come off.”

This year, HMIC has been able to compare year-on-year performance of each police force, and therefore assess the direction of each force and the police service as a whole. Forces are assessed against three broad categories: effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy. Overall, in comparison with 2015:

in relation to effectiveness, 10 police forces improved, 26 stayed the same and seven forces declined;

in relation to efficiency, six forces improved, 30 stayed the same and seven forces declined; and

in relation to legitimacy, four forces improved, 36 stayed the same and three forces declined.

Overall, in HMIC inspections, the judgments which are made in relation to the efficiency and effectiveness of the police are predominantly about how well the police use their money and other resources, not about how much funding forces have at their disposal.

Across the 43 police forces of England and Wales, four forces were judged to be ‘outstanding’ against one or more of these categories; only one force – Bedfordshire Police – was found to be ‘inadequate’ for one category, but 18 forces were found to ‘require improvement’ in one or more categories. On 12 April 2017, HMIC published assessments by each of Her Majesty’s Inspectors of Constabulary on the performance of the 43 police forces in England and Wales over the last year.

State of Policing: The Annual Assessment of Policing in England and Wales 2016

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Member Achievements

Cathedral Bobby

Well tell us something we didn't know

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Member Achievements

Zulu 22

And this comes from the government appointed Chief Inspector of Constabularies, Sir Thomas Winsor. Now someone please remind me whoi was the person responsible for the wholesale changes in Policing which brought this about.  Was it Tom Winsor before he got his knighthood as a reward. I me he did screw up the Network rail as well.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Member Achievements


He did an interview on Sky News that officers are completely loosing it on facebook and twitter about where he said that detectives take the job home with them and response and SNT officers take nothing home.

On twitter there is the #itookhome hashtag which is trending.

  • Like 3

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Member Achievements


And... he has apologised.



Statement by Sir Thomas Winsor, HMCIC, on officers' stress

Yesterday, on Sky News, I made a mistake, for which I apologise.

I said that, in contrast to detectives, response officers “take nothing home” at the end of their shifts. That is plainly wrong, it is not what I meant, and I realise it has caused anger and offence. I am sorry about this.

I was asked what might be the reasons why forces are facing difficulties in persuading officers to become or stay detectives. I spoke about the risks which detectives carry in a caseload, some of which will be both complex and involve crimes of an intensely distressing nature, including crimes of violence, abuse and sexual exploitation.

Response and neighbourhood policing are undoubtedly stressful. Police officers and staff who deal with the many dreadful things which people do to others, or which happen to them, most certainly do not leave them behind; they take them home, and in many cases they stay with them forever. This was illustrated by some of the harrowing examples on Twitter yesterday.

I hope those who have criticised what I said yesterday will also look at what I said in the state of policing report yesterday about the very considerable risks and stresses which police officers and staff face and carry every day, and the repeated tributes which I have paid to their bravery, professionalism, dedication and sheer hard work, none of which is in any doubt. The public owe a very great debt to police officers and staff for what they do, even though they do not fully appreciate the extent, frequency, severity and terrible nature of so much of it.




Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Member Achievements

Indiana Jones

Ironincally, part of the report was around leadership. Harrumphh.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Member Achievements


Having thought about what He said yesterday it was very quickly misinterpreted and taken out of context by various social media groups. I suspect many of them knew what he meant when he said response officers don't take anything home. Yes, in some forces response teams and SNT don't have crime reports/case files/ ongoing safeguarding issues however they are the first responders so will often see the worst situations which provides a different type of stress.

I agree with what he said about why people wouldn't want to leave response team and join CID.


I would recommend reading Mental Health Cops blog about the mental health comments he made

  • Like 2

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Member Achievements


Maybe what he said was misinterpreted or maybe his complete lack of understanding of actually being a police officer was voiced. There weren't just social media groups that took umbrage at what he said but also some very high ranking police officers too.

His report basically said what anybody who actually has anything to do with the police has known for years, he is a regulator and a statistician  and has little understanding of actual policing in the real world.

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Member Achievements


If the HMIC report was saying something totally different to what those in the police were saying there would be questions being asked and rightly so. When it agrees with all that they are criticised. It is bizarre. They can't do right for doing wrong.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

About us

Police Community was originally founded in 2014 by two serving Police Officers.

In 2016 it was incorporated as a limited company called RAW Digital Media Limited and then purchased 3 other forums; Police Specials, UK Police Online and Police UK to form the largest policing discussion forum network in the UK.

Get in touch

  • 20-22 Wenlock Road, London N1 7GU
  • contact@rawdigitalmedia.co.uk
  • 0844 357 0111
  • Forums In Our Group - Police.Community - UKPoliceOnline.CO.UK - PoliceSpecials.COM - PoliceUK.COM



    Meet The Team

  • Chief Bakes
    Chief Bakes Management
  • Chief Rat
    Chief Rat Management
  • Chief Cheetah
    Chief Cheetah Management
  • Rocket
    Rocket Global Moderators
  • David
    David Global Moderators
  • Devil
    Devil Global Moderators
  • MindTheGap
    MindTheGap Global Moderators
  • Sir Penguin
    Sir Penguin Global Moderators
  • Remmy
    Remmy Global Moderators
  • Fedster
    Fedster Global Moderators