Response 460937118

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Risks

1. Does the Policing 2026 strategy identify and acknowledge the main risks, challenges, opportunities and demands likely to impact on policing over the next 10 years?

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Yes
No
Ticked Not sure
We would welcome any view you have.
It seems to me that, if Scotland chooses to become an independent country, this will have a drastic effect on the risks and challenges that we face, and on the opportunities and demands that impact on policing. Even if Scotland chooses to remain in the UK, our separation from Europe is likely to see many changes, not least in our legislation. None of this seems to have been considered in this ten-year strategy. For example, the strategy document states that the population of Scotland is expected to grow through international migration. This appears to be based on an extrapolation of facts from the status quo. Given the enormous changes just beginning, and the uncertainty as yet regarding how the status of EU citizens might be affected, this assumption could be way off the mark. The population might actually decrease if economic life were to deteriorate sharply, with people choosing to seek work and a better quality of life elsewhere.

Focus

2. Do you agree the main areas of focus proposed within the Policing 2026 strategy are the right ones to deliver an enhanced policing service?

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Strongly agree
Ticked Mostly agree
Not sure
Mostly disagree
Strongly disagree
Please tell us why you think these are the right or wrong areas of focus?
I think that the resources required to deliver a meaningful interaction with the proliferation of diverse communities that form our modern society will detract from other areas where people expect the police to concentrate their efforts. My fear is that the police service will simply be unable to meet the level of demand, and will inevitably be criticized by the public for failing meet expectations in one or more of the first three areas of focus outlined. Given the current levels of staffing and funding, I cannot see how this aspiration can possibly be met. It seems to me that localism, diversity and the virtual world ought to be tackled by some completely new and separate agency.

Methods

3. Do you agree the methods proposed within this strategy are the right ones to deliver an improved policing service?

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Strongly agree
Mostly agree
Ticked Not sure
Mostly disagree
Strongly disagree
Please tell us why you think this is the right or wrong approach?
There seems to be a strong reliance on technological advances and developments, but the experience thus far in the NHS, and even in Police Scotland, suggests that this may be overly ambitious and optimistic. Personally, I am not confident that Scotland will have an adequate network penetration within ten years to support this approach - other than in the major cities.

Performance

4. The Policing 2026 Strategy states that public confidence will be a key measure of success and the effectiveness of Police performance. Do you agree with this approach?

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Strongly agree
Ticked Mostly agree
Not sure
Mostly disagree
Strongly disagree
We would welcome any views you have
I think that the police service has always enjoyed a significant measure of public support in Scotland, and, indeed, that it will be critical for the future as well. My main fear is that the police service is currently not sufficiently well resourced to achieve what it hopes. This is a dangerous state of affairs because, once confidence in the police is lost, it will be incredibly difficult to recover it.

Workforce

5. The Policing 2026 strategy highlights that we will need to re-shape our organisation with a workforce focussed on having the right skills and capacity to meet future challenges. Do you agree with this approach?

Please select one item
Strongly agree
Mostly agree
Ticked Not sure
Mostly disagree
Strongly disagree
We would welcome any views you have.
Again, I'm not convinced that the police service currently is equipped to face the full range of diverse needs that have been laid out. I wonder if policing in the future will have to develop two quite separate bodies of staff: those who deal with the practical, "real" world, and those who deal with "virtual" interactions and "high-tech" criminality.

Clear & Understandable

6. Is the strategy presented in a clear and understandable way?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
We would welcome any views you have.
For those who work at management level, the document is clear and well structured. I suspect, however, that the majority of ordinary people will struggle to understand what is being said here. There are some good efforts made to overcome this with a "Day in the Life" of PC Sophie Robertson and "Sue's Story", but a lot of people don't respond well to phrases such as "Transform corporate support services" or "Sustained excellence in service and protection". For me, this begs the question: who is this document written for? If many of the people who pick this up (or look at it on a screen) switch off after a couple of pages, is it anything more than a "tick-box" exercise? If every part of our diverse community is truly to be consulted, this document should really be produced in a number of different formats, from its current appearance right through to a comic strip!

Other views

7. We would welcome any additional views you have on our strategy and how it will affect you, or any other person.

We would welcome any views you have.
I appreciate the fact that I have been invited to submit a response to the 2026 strategy document, but I really don't think that I am very well qualified or experienced to comment on such a document. As a (fairly ordinary) member of the public, my experience of the matters under discussion is almost negligible. I really have little concept of how this strategy is likely to affect me - even if all the forecasts about the future were to be proved substantially correct. I am more concerned just now with how our country may look in five years' time, and whether or not we shall be able to afford any police service at all!

About you

10. Are you responding as an individual or an organisation?

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I am answering on behalf of an organisation
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