HMIC report into the management of domestic abuse cases by Essex Police
I welcome the HMIC report into the management of domestic abuse cases by Essex Police, published on June 13, 2013.
This independent review was requested by the force, with my full support as Police and Crime Commissioner.
HMIC finds that Essex Police has made improvements in its handling of these incidents, especially in providing background intelligence and information to officers, responding to calls quickly and investing significantly in training.
The report also identifies several areas where further progress needs to be made. In particular, HMIC finds that Essex Police should make further refinements to the risk assessment process, increase the focus on perpetrators including targeted activity around repeat offenders, continue to develop means to enhance the confidence of victims to report crimes, and intensify its work with partner agencies across the county to safeguard victims. These are all constructive and insightful recommendations, and I am grateful to HMIC for their work.
Domestic abuse is the only crime type that is a specific area of focus in the Police and Crime Plan for Essex, and our new Chief Constable, Stephen Kavanagh, is personally leading the force’s work. I will be reviewing progress month by month.
It is essential that Essex Police continues to develop and improve its practices and processes for protecting victims of domestic abuse and bringing perpetrators to justice. It is also crucial that partner agencies and the voluntary sector are fully integrated into this work so the resources and the support available are used to safeguard victims and prevent harm.
Every week, I meet officers who are deeply committed to making a difference and doing their utmost to combat the dangers of domestic abuse, and the HMIC report found that there is much good work taking place in Essex. I know that Chief Constable Kavanagh has already begun building on that good practice, and is determined to move to a position where Essex Police is amongst the very best forces in the country for managing incidents of domestic abuse.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex
The HMIC report, “Essex Police’s Approach to Managing Cases of Domestic Abuse”, can be read or downloaded here.