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Complaints & Professional Standards Sub-Committee

The Sub-Committee meetings will be held in public, unless business is deemed to be Part 2, and minutes will be taken. The Sub-Committee comprises 4 members, requires a quorum of 3 members and will usually meet 4 times a year

The Sub-Committee will report to the Community Engagement Committee at least twice a year.


Agenda and Committee Reports

Approved minutes

Terms of reference

1.  To oversee the complaints procedures as they are applied locally by the Force to ensure that they comply fully with the provisions set out in sections 67 to 76 of the Police Act 1996 (Handling of Complaints), and related Home Office guidance. To achieve this, the Sub-Committee will:

  • Understand local Force policies and procedures for the recording and handling of complaints, be satisfied that they represent best practice, and that the Force has effective managerial oversight of the relevant processes.
  • Develop contacts with local partners including HMIC and IPCC and other partner organisations in order to obtain an independent assessment of the adequacy of Force procedures.
  • Devise the Authority's systems for implementing new "complaints" regulations, for example the 2010 statutory guidance particularly those relating to the "intervention" of the Police Authority.

2.   To consider more widely issues raised by complaints as they impact on the efficiency and effectiveness of the Force, including the cause and instances of complaints, the response of the Force to them, and wider links to general Force policy, style and management. To achieve this, the Sub-Committee will:

  • Undertake dip sampling of finalised complaint files to understand further to processes for handling complaints, to check this against stated policy and procedures, and to inform a view about the effectiveness and fairness of management judgement in this area.
  • Identify particular trends from performance analysis reports and commission additional reports as necessary to identify the cause and instances of complaints.
  • Monitor the Force's progress with service improvements it has identified during the complaint investigation process and recommendations it has agreed to from IPCC investigations and appeal decisions.

3.   To scrutinise the performance of the Force in processing complaints. To achieve this the Sub-Committee will:

  • Monitor how well the Force meets timelines for processing complaints.
  • Monitor volumes of complaints against historical levels and compare with national and peer force levels.

4.   To consider any matters relating to professional standards, civil cases, police conduct, the Independent Police Complaints Commission and any other matters that the committee considers relevant to its business.

5.   To consider any complaints procedures including the Police Authority's own initial handling and recording of inappropriate conduct and direction and control complaints.