Crime & Justice

Police forces must undergo a serious change to attract the best and brightest out there

On his first day in office, Boris Johnson stood on the steps of Downing Street and committed to recruiting an additional 20,000 police officers by 2023. The commitment was central to the Conservative Party’s manifesto at the 2019 election.

What the government is attempting to achieve is no mean feat. As well as recruiting the additional 20,000 police officers, they must also replace those who leave. That’s an additional 6,500 – or 5 per cent – of the workforce every year. Across the three and a half years of the programme that means recruiting and training 42,500 new police officers.

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‘Policing Can Win’

As a new Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police is appointed, Policy Exchange has published our report, “‘Policing Can Win’: The New Commissioner’s First 100 Days” by David Spencer, Policy Exchange’s Head of Crime & Justice.

The central thesis to this report is that ‘Policing Can Win’ over those who would commit crime and disorder in our communities. In addition to summarising the core issues the Met has faced over the last five years, this report sets out the three areas where substantial changes must be made

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Crime in our capital city will stay high unless confidence in the Met is restored

London’s Mayor Sadiq Khan warned this week that the cost-of-living crisis may lead to an increase in violent crime in the capital. Policing – like every other twenty-first century public service – is replete with numbers that measure performance. The number of police officers working on the frontline; how long it takes for the police to get to the scene of a stabbing; the number of murders solved.

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Online Harms Bill reflects Policy Exchange proposals

A new Online Harms Bill, unveiled this week, includes measures that will force social media companies to delete harmful content or face fines of up to 10 per cent of their turnover and adopt a new code of conduct to protect children on the internet. The legislation builds on recommendations made in Policy Exchange’s 2017 report, The New Netwar, which called for ministers to “put in place a system of financial penalties, administered by the independent regulator, to force company compliance” and urged the adoption of a “more stringent codes of conduct”.

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Daylight Robbery

Research by Policy Exchange finds that fraud and error during the COVID-19 crisis will cost the UK Government in the region of £4.6 billion. The lower bound for the cost of fraud in this crisis is £1.3 billion and the upper bound is £7.9 billion, in light of total projected expenditure of £154.3 billion by the Government (excluding additional expenditure announced in the 8th July 2020 Economic Update). The true value may be closer to the upper bound, due to the higher than usual levels of fraud that normally accompany disaster management.

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Exiting Lockdown

The UK Government should extend its Five Pillar Testing Strategy to a Six Pillar Testing and Tracing Strategy by introducing digital contact tracing as a Sixth Pillar. A Testing and Tracing Strategy should bring together expertise from the Department of Health, NHSX, NHS Digital, Police, Military and the Intelligence Agencies, to create a new independent national 24/7 Testing and Tracing Command Centre.

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Latest Crime & Justice Publications

Cost of the Cops: Manpower and deployment in policing

Cost of the Cops: Manpower and deployment in policing

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Since 2001 police funding has surged by a quarter in real terms but this investment has not transformed police performance. Taxpayers have spent at least £500m since 2006 in extra employment costs for over 7,000 police officers who have a uniform, but who are hidden away in back offices rather than policing. Cost of the Cops shows how the police can increase numbers of officers on front line duties at a time of when the police budget is shrinking.

Latest Crime & Justice Blogs

Domestic Violence: Time to shift the blame from victims to perpetrators

Domestic Violence: Time to shift the blame from victims to perpetrators

Charlotte McLeod, Policy Exchange’s Crime & Justice Research Fellow, highlights the problems with the criminal justice system’s approach to domestic violence. Charlotte argues that we need to find alternative, more proactive ways of tackling domestic violence and improving the confidence for victims that their abusers will be convicted. Ultimately, however, she argues that we must also see society change its attitude and shift the blame and responsibility from victims to perpetrators

Swifter and more certain justice will drive down crime

Swifter and more certain justice will drive down crime

Max Chambers, Policy Exchange’s Head of Crime & Justice, sets out what improvements need to be made to the justice system in order to actually change criminals’ behaviour. The system would be need to be faster, so that the connection between offence and punishment is not lost over time, punishment would be more certain through greater detection of crime, and more problem-solving techniques would be incorporated.

Ending FGM in the UK: Failures of the past and hope for the future

Ending FGM in the UK: Failures of the past and hope for the future

Charlotte McLeod, Policy Exchange’s Crime & Justice Research Fellow, highlights the shameful failure of the UK government to properly tackle female genital mutilation, despite the practice being outlawed 30 years ago. Charlotte sets out five ways in which the government can do more to eliminate the practice.

Latest Crime & Justice News

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