Bedfordshire’s police and crime commissioner role is supported by a small team – the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC). Its role is to ensure the delivery of the statutory duties of a commissioner, their office, and to ensure the views of the local community are heard and responded to.
The team focuses on the following:
- Representing the voice of the public
- Working with partners to ensure services for victims
- Offender management strategy
- The commissioning and delivery of early intervention programmes
It also works with Bedfordshire Police to ensure it is delivering an effective and transparent service.
The office has added to its responsibilities by bringing victim services in house. This was through the creation, and then the management, of Signpost, a service that supports people who have experienced crime.
It has also taken on the lead for the charity that supports elderly and vulnerable community members with crime prevention; The Bedfordshire Police Partnership Trust.
As the team gets ready to welcome a new PCC after the election on 6 May, it is working with partners to ensure a smooth transition in all services that the community relies on.
Such as the stop and search scrutiny panel. This is made up of community representatives that meets with the OPCC and police to watch real videos of stop searches in Bedfordshire. This is to ensure transparency can take place, views and opinions are listened to; and action taken wherever needed. Email Community Cohesion if you would like to become a member of this scrutiny panel.
Signpost is commissioned and funded by the OPCC. It offers free and confidential support to anyone affected by crime, whether it has been reported to the police or not.
Signpost was created to help and support victims of crime to cope and recover from their experience and ensure they receive their entitlements under the Code of Practice for Victims of Crime 2015.
For more information about this service, please visit the Signpost website.
The OPCC has a statutory duty to maintain an Independent Custody Visiting Scheme for Bedfordshire. Independent custody visiting is a well-established system whereby volunteers attend police stations to check on the treatment of detainees, the conditions in which they are held and that their rights and entitlements are being observed.
The scheme offers protection and confidentiality to detainees and the police and provides reassurance to the wider community. If you would like more information about becoming an Independent Custody Visitor in Bedfordshire, or for general information regarding the Scheme, please contact: PCC@bedfordshire.pnn.police.uk.
As part of the communication work the office does, there are various social media platforms to help keep the people of Bedfordshire up-to-date with what the office is doing and as a vehicle to listen to areas the community wish to raise to the office.
The office also supplies a newsletter at the start of every month which sums up what the office has been doing the previous month. If you would like to join the Newsletter Database, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information about Bedfordshire’s OPCC can be found here.
The five candidates for Bedfordshire’s new PCC are: