Glasgow Labour MSP Anne McTaggart is backing a comprehensive review of policing in Scotland.
This week Scottish Labour launched the Pearson Review, to be undertaken by Scottish Labour justice spokesperson Graeme Pearson.
Mr Pearson, a former Head of Crime and Counter Terrorism at Strathclyde Police before his appointment as Director General of the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency will travel the country speaking to rank and file officers, civilian staff, community groups, victim support staff and others as part of a wide-ranging review of policing in Scotland.
The review will consider:
- Local accountability
- The relationship between Police Scotland, the Scottish Police Authority and Scottish Government ministers
Since the creation of the single force in 2013 Police Scotland has faced a series of scandals and controversies – including the M9 car crash, cuts to civilian staff and services, a lack of transparency over stop and search and armed officers.
Last week Chief Constable Sir Stephen House announced he will be stepping down before the end of the year.
Ms McTaggart also challenged local SNP MSP Bill Kidd to say whether or not he backs the £500,000 pay off received by outgoing Chief Constable Sir Stephen House, at a time when the SNP Government have cut local police services.
Glasgow Labour MSP Anne McTaggart said:
“Police officers put their personal safety on the line every single day to keep people safe, but they are working under immense pressure.
“Instead of doing the job they trained for, too many are having to fill back office functions because of SNP Government cuts.
“In Glasgow we have seen more than a dozen police stations shut to the public after midnight, a disappointing move which did nothing to improve public confidence in the safety of our streets.
“Scottish Labour supported the introduction of the single police force back in 2013 in the hope it would share best practice and boost accountability but something has gone badly wrong with its implementation. The resignation of Sir Stephen House was the right thing to do but the problems won’t follow him out the exit door.
“Policing in Scotland needs a shake-up. We need to get back to the kind of community policing that made Scotland the envy of the world at one time, the kind of policing that the people of Glasgow can trust.
“I’m backing this review to suggest the reforms that Scotland needs to see to deliver better policing and a better environment for officers.”
Interested parties can make submissions to the Pearson Review at http://www.scottishlabour.org.uk/page/s/the-pearson-review or on firstname.lastname@example.org