Scottish Police seek public opinion

The Scottish Police Authority (SPA) is seeking the people’s views on the key issues they believe the authority should be scrutinising.

The consultation has been initiated by the SPA to inform which key police-related topics will form the authority’s in-depth scrutiny work plan for 2014/’15.

The authority has a legal obligation to contribute to continuous improvement in policing and hold the Chief Constable to account for the policing service delivered. Setting a scrutiny work plan which is informed by public and partners views is one important way of delivering on that.

Since its establishment in April, the authority has already looked at a number of police-related topics and initiated an in-depth look at the issues and concerns around the use of stop and search as a police tactic across Scotland.

It is inviting anyone with a view on policing to submit up to three suggested policing issues for the SPA to consider when setting its work plan.

SPA chair Vic Emery stated: “A single police service concentrates decision-making, and brings significant opportunities to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the service. That also brings a need for equally strong accountability.

“Good governance means genuine public participation in setting police priorities, and rigorous scrutiny of how well it meets them. The Scottish Police Authority is the national body where those twin objectives come together.

“One of the principles of good governance is that when we are making important choices about services, we ensure that the public voice is brought into that process. A fundamental area of our work in the coming year includes how we scrutinise and understand key policing policies and performance.

“We want communities and policing partners to share their priorities on the policing issues that concern them, so we can use that insight to inform our scrutiny work plan for the year ahead.”

The consultation paper can be accessed from the SPA website at: and the deadline for replies is Wednesday, January 15, 2014.

Consultation responses should be posted to the SPA at Elphinstone House, 65 West Regent Street, Glasgow, G2 2AF, or e-mailed to