• Gloucestershire Police and Crime Commissioner’s ambitious plan to involve local communities in his police and crime plan has been temporarily delayed by the extension to Covid restrictions
  • PCC Chris Nelson is planning a series of meetings with local parish and town councils with the aim of promoting the ‘Citizens in Policing’ model to create a new role for volunteers
  • He said, “Parish councils understand their communities better than anyone and I am keen to tap into their knowledge for support”
  • However, the Government’s decision to push back the end of Covid restrictions until 19 July means the meetings will not now take place until later in the year.
Covid road block delays PCC’s road show plans
Covid road block delays PCC’s road show plans

With his term in office already reduced by one year because of a 12-month delay in the election due to Covid, Gloucestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner was keen to get on with the job.

Now the Pandemic has inadvertently dealt him a fresh blow.

The Prime Minister’s decision to hold back the end of restrictions, originally planned for 21 June until 19 July at the earliest, means his ‘Police and Crime Plan Roadshows’ will also have to be temporarily postponed.

Instead, the first of his meetings with local town and parish councils will begin in September rather than June as originally scheduled.

Mr. Nelson said, “There will be those who understand the Prime Minister’s caution and others who disagree, but I am disappointed that it has forced me to postpone getting out into the districts as I had planned.

“The silver lining is that it gives me a little more time to refine my police and crime plan, though with a shorter term in office than my predecessor, I am keen that no time is wasted.

“I have said before that meeting the public face to face is one of the most important aspects of my role.  Parish and town councillors are at the grass roots of our democracy and they understand their communities better than anyone. I am looking forward to going on the road and explaining my ideas in more detail and hopefully winning their support.”

The PCC will be accompanied by Chief Constable Rod Hansen. Their aim is to gain support in inspiring a new generation of Citizens in Policing who will act as ‘community volunteers’.

Other forces have also used the ‘Citizens in Policing’ model to enhance neighbourhood policing.

Mr. Nelson has also pledged to recruit another 300 full time police officers.