Police officers in the West Midlands
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Lord Stevens: Police structure not 'fit for purpose'

A major report on the future of policing in England and Wales, commissioned by Labour two years ago, has delivered its findings.

The former Metropolitan Police commissioner Lord Stevens, who led the report, told the Today programme's Sarah Montague that neighbourhood policing was the "bedrock" of his proposals to improve the current system, but emphasised the review should be "seen as a whole".

When asked if the current 43 police forces operating should be merged, he said he has not found anyone who says this structure is "fit for purpose".

He also said the introduction of Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) "could have been done better", but that he would "enhance and improve them" rather than remove the structure.

Lord Stevens was also critical of the amount of police work handed out to private security firms, noting that one force was "talking about 52% of their delivery [being completed] by private means".

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4's Today programme on Monday 25 November 2013.

  • 25 Nov 2013
  • From the section UK