Fedster + 1,307 Posted August 30, 2018 Share Posted August 30, 2018 Backlog having 'serious impact' on sex offender management, HMIs warn. Date - 30th August 2018 By - Sophie Garrod - Police Oracle 5 Comments Merseyside Police’s sex offender unit is failing to visit high-risk sex offenders as often as it should, according to a report published today by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS). The force had a backlog of almost 100 overdue visits to registered sex offenders, HMIs found. It cites heavy workloads and poor communication with neighbourhood police officers as reasons why it is struggling to manage. The report concludes that despite showing a strong commitment to child protection and safeguarding, the inspection showed much more work is needed to improve its work surrounding vulnerable children. HM Inspector of Constabulary Matt Parr said: “I am encouraged to see that Merseyside Police is committed to doing more to keep children safe. When the force’s own case audit showed failings in how it responds to child protection incidents, it took quick and decisive action to tackle the problem head-on. This shows me that safeguarding children is a real priority for the service. “But there is still plenty of room for improvement. At the time of our inspection, Merseyside Police’s sex offender unit was seriously overstretched. Offender managers were individually responsible for up to 100 registered sex offenders - double what we would like to see. “This had a serious impact on the force’s ability to manage sex offenders. Too often, offender managers were playing catch-up and couldn't prioritise preventative work. Neighbourhood policing teams were often unaware of sex offenders living in their communities. And it was particularly concerning to see that the force’s records show a backlog of 98 overdue visits to registered sex offenders. “This is an area that requires real improvement before I can be confident that Merseyside Police is meeting its duty to keep children safe.” On a positive note, HMIs found the force carries out investigations to a good standard and uses police protection powers appropriately to safeguard children. It was also praised for its effective partnership arrangements with local authorities, extensive welfare support for members of the workforce dealing with child protection cases and has renewed its efforts to improve the awareness of staff about vulnerability and their safeguarding responsibilities. View On Police Oracle Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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