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 Blogs

Tagging isn’t working – privatisation is no panacea

Tagging isn’t working – privatisation is no panacea

David Skelton, Deputy Director at Policy Exchange, argues that private monopolies will do little to drive up standards in public service delivery. He suggests that a competitive local market needs to be established in the area of electronic monitoring, especially with the electronic tagging of criminals as we explored in recent report Future of Corrections.

Don’t let apathy rob you of a say on how you are policed

Don’t let apathy rob you of a say on how you are policed

Policy Exchange’s Head of Crime & Justice, Blair Gibbs, explains the importance of new Police & Crime Commissioners and introduces our new website – PoliceElections.com – which is designed to raise public awareness about the elections and those who are standing in them.

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