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Humberside 2015

Read more about Humberside 2015

This is HMIC’s second assessment of the effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy with which Humberside Police keeps people safe and reduces crime. PEEL (police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy) gives you information about how your local police force is performing in several important areas. It does this in a way that is comparable both across England and Wales, and year-on-year.

The extent to which Humberside Police is effective at keeping people safe and reducing crime requires improvement.

The extent to which Humberside Police is efficient at keeping people safe and reducing crime is inadequate.

The extent to which Humberside Police is legitimate at keeping people safe and reducing crime is good.

This year, for the first time, we have assessed leadership across the force. The assessment has led to a narrative rather than graded judgment, which is summarised below.

Read more about my assessment of Humberside Police’s performance this year, including where I would like to see improvements next year.

This year, for the first time, we have assessed leadership across the force. The assessment has led to a narrative rather than graded judgment, which is summarised below.

Read more about my assessment of Humberside Police’s performance this year, including where I would like to see improvements next year.

Michael Cunningham, Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary

Read the transcript of the video

Contact Michael Cunningham

HMI’s observations

In its PEEL inspections this year, HMIC found some areas of serious concern in the performance of Humberside Police in keeping people safe and reducing crime. In view of these findings, I have been in regular contact with the chief constable and I am reassured by the way in which the force has acknowledged and responded to the issues we have raised. However, I do not underestimate how much improvement is needed.

This year, the force has changed the way it is organised with the aim of improving its service. These changes led to the force not being able to meet the demands from the public and resources not being available at peak times. As a result of this, HMIC judged the force to be inadequate during our efficiency inspection in June.

I have been reassured by the evidence of improvement that we found in our subsequent inspections and our process of monitoring the force.

The new chief officer team continues to make considered changes to the way the force manages its demand. The force’s capability to handle calls has improved and a new shift system is due to start imminently.

Although the force works well with partners, I am concerned about its performance in preventing crime and anti-social behaviour. I am pleased that we found during our inspections that the force has improved how it manages offenders; and it is good at identifying and disrupting organised criminality. However, the force needs to improve further how it investigates crime and how it responds to incidents involving repeat or vulnerable victims.

The chief officer team has communicated its vision and values to the workforce effectively. The force is actively developing an ethical culture throughout the organisation, and is placing a sound emphasis on the importance of strong engagement with local communities.

Description of force area

Humberside Police provides policing services to the East Riding of Yorkshire, Kingston-upon-Hull, North Lincolnshire and North East Lincolnshire. Although there are some more affluent areas, Humberside has a high level of poverty. Around 0.9 million people mainly live in the urban centres which include the city of Kingston upon Hull, as well as the towns of Bridlington, Scunthorpe and Grimsby. The resident population is increased by university students and the large numbers who visit or travel through the area each year. The transport infrastructure includes major sea ports.

The proportion of areas in Humberside that are predicted to present a very high challenge to the police is higher than the national average. These are characterised by social deprivation or a concentration of commercial premises (including licensed premises), and in some cases both. Providing services across the entirety of the force area is hindered by the road network.

Working arrangements

The force has entered into a strategic partnership with South Yorkshire Police. The two forces now have joint human resources, information and communication technology and finance. They are considering collaborating to provide all policing functions apart from local policing and the role of the chief constable.

A number of chief officer changes have been made during the year including the appointment of a new deputy chief constable and two assistant chief constables.

Effectiveness

In our effectiveness inspection, we judged Humberside Police to require improvement in the way in which it keeps people safe and reduces crime. The force focuses on the prevention of crime and anti-social behaviour and works well with partners. It has more work to do to improve crime investigation, but it has improved how it manages offenders. The force is committed to protecting the most vulnerable victims but needs to improve how it responds to repeat or vulnerable victims. It is good at identifying and disrupting the activity of organised crime groups and has effective arrangements in place to ensure that it can fulfil its national policing responsibilities. This is the first year HMIC has graded forces on their overall effectiveness so a year-on-year comparison is not possible.

Efficiency

Humberside Police is not prepared to face its future financial challenges. The force has a limited understanding of current and future demand. It has introduced a new operating model but has not fully matched resources to demand in some important areas, which affects the force’s ability to provide a good service to the public. The force has good financial control and plans to meet its savings requirements but these rely on effective implementation of the operating model and increased collaboration. Due to serious difficulties in implementing the new operating model it cannot be judged any higher than inadequate. In last year’s value for money inspection, which considered how forces had met the challenge of the previous spending review period, the force was judged to be good. Since the efficiency inspection in June 2016, Humberside Police has recognised the inadequacies highlighted within the report and is making progress in implementing the necessary improvements needed.

Legitimacy

The Humberside Police chief officer team has clearly communicated its vision and values to the workforce and is actively developing an ethical culture throughout the force. Most officers and staff that we spoke to understood the relationship between doing a good job, effective engagement and confidence in the police. The force has in place an effective way to monitor issues that arise locally and to identify emerging force-wide trends.

Humberside Police is not compliant with the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme. Also, it has more to do to ensure sufficient oversight of Taser use.

This is the first time HMIC has graded forces on their legitimacy, so no year-on-year comparison is possible.

Leadership

The force has a clear vision of the style of leadership that it requires to improve its services, and this has been communicated effectively across the organisation. The force has worked with staff and officers to improve its appraisal, development and welfare programmes.

Insights from other inspections

HMIC undertakes other inspections in addition to the PEEL programme. Since the last PEEL assessment there have been four reports published on inspections that included Humberside Police. More detail on some of these inspections can be found under the Other inspections section.

Looking forward to PEEL 2016

In the year ahead, I will be interested to see how the force responds to this assessment, along with the cause of concern and areas for improvement that HMIC has identified in the last year.

I will be particularly interested to see:

  • how the force improves the way it investigates crime and the quality of those investigations;
  • how the force responds to incidents involving vulnerable victims;
  • the force developing a better understanding of the demand for its services and matching its resources to that demand;
  • the continued review and development of the force operating model and the implementation of the new force shift pattern to improve the service to communities; and
  • how the new chief officer team leads improvements across the force.

In May 2016, like the majority of forces in England and Wales, the force will see the second elections for its police and crime commissioner.

Effectiveness

How effective is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?

Last updated 18/02/2016
Requires improvement

Humberside Police requires improvement at keeping people safe and reducing crime. The force focuses on the prevention of crime and anti-social behaviour and works well with partners. It has more work to do to improve crime investigation, but it has improved how it manages offenders. The force is committed to protecting the most vulnerable victims but needs to improve how it responds to repeat or vulnerable victims. It is good at identifying and disrupting the activity of organised crime groups and has effective arrangements in place to ensure that it can fulfil its national policing responsibilities. This is the first year HMIC has graded forces on their overall effectiveness so a year-on-year comparison is not possible.

Humberside Police requires improvement at keeping people safe and reducing crime. The force is focused on preventing crime and anti-social behaviour. The police and crime commissioner and the chief constable are committed to maintaining neighbourhood policing to support communities. Crime prevention and reducing anti-social behaviour is understood by officers and staff across the force. The force has established partnership working with a range of organisations to support a problem-solving approach to both crime and anti-social behaviour along with managing repeat and dangerous offenders. However staff find it difficult to continue engagement at a local level to carry out preventative and problem-solving policing.

The force introduced a new way of working in April 2015. This affected the force’s capability to answer calls for its service and its capacity both to investigate crime and to maintain neighbourhood policing. Changes are planned for the near future that aim to alleviate the difficulties the force has faced.

The force has addressed some of the recommendations from HMIC’s crime inspection in 2014. It has improved the way it prevents crime and anti-social behaviour. However, there is still more work for the force to do in the ways it allocates and investigates crimes, which are inconsistent and lead at times to untrained staff investigating crime.

Protecting vulnerable people is a priority for the force but it still needs to improve how it responds to missing and absent children. The force has made a good start in ensuring it is well prepared to tackle child sexual exploitation.

Humberside Police understands the threat and risk that serious organised crime can pose to the community and has effective measures in place to manage and tackle organised crime. The force has the necessary arrangements in place to ensure that it can fulfil its national policing responsibilities.

 

View the four questions for effectiveness

Efficiency

How efficient is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?

Last updated 20/10/2015
Inadequate

HMIC found that Humberside Police is not prepared to face its future financial challenges. The force has a limited understanding of current and future demand. It has introduced a new operating model but has not fully matched resources to demand in some important areas, which affects the force’s ability to provide a good service to the public. The force has good financial control and plans to meet its savings requirements but these rely on effective implementation of the operating model and increased collaboration. Due to serious difficulties in implementing the new operating model it cannot be judged any higher than inadequate. In last year’s value for money inspection, which considered how forces had met the challenge of the first spending review period, the force was judged to be good.

HMIC judges Humberside Police to be inadequate. The force has a limited understanding of the demand for its services and is not able currently to match resources to demand. While the force understands demand from calls for service it does not understand many other types of demand such as that being placed on neighbourhood policing teams or that arising from more complex crimes, inefficient force processes or changes to services provided by partner agencies.

In our PEEL 2014 Assessment, we said we would be particularly interested to see how the force introduces its new operating model. This was launched in April 2015 and has had difficulty in providing the right level of staff in the right places to make it work effectively. The force has recognised that is resulting in a systemic failure to provide a quality and timely service to the public. Humberside is monitoring this issue daily and is working to address it.

The force’s current workforce model does not match demand and organisational requirements. While Humberside’s workforce numbers have been set at an affordable level, the current workforce model is not sustainable, particularly with the further planned workforce reductions which will be needed to make future savings.

Humberside Police has achieved its savings requirement and balanced its budget throughout the spending review period. The force has entered into a strategic partnership with South Yorkshire Police aimed at improving efficiency through pooling resources. Back-office functions such as human resources and finance, are already shared by the two forces and Humberside is considering further collaboration on all policing functions (except for local policing).

 

View the three questions for efficiency

Legitimacy

How legitimate is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?

Last updated 11/02/2016
Good

The Humberside Police chief officer team has clearly communicated its vision and values to the workforce and is actively developing an ethical culture throughout the force. Most officers and staff that we spoke to understood the relationship between doing a good job, effective engagement and confidence in the police. The force has in place an effective way to monitor issues that arise locally and to identify emerging force-wide trends.

Humberside Police is not compliant with the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme. Also, it has more to do to ensure there is sufficient oversight of Taser use.

This is the first time HMIC has graded forces on their legitimacy, so no year-on-year comparison is possible.

The Humberside Police chief officer team has clearly communicated its vision and values to the workforce and is actively developing an ethical culture throughout the force.

The Code of Ethics is integral to the way in which the force communicates its change programme to staff, and is included as a topic within the performance development reviews for all police officers and staff. Staff we spoke to, including staff association representatives, agreed that complaint and misconduct investigations are fair.

When HMIC looked at how well the force understands and successfully engages with all the people it serves, we found most officers and staff that we spoke to understand the relationship between doing a good job, effective engagement and confidence in the police. The force has in place an effective way to monitor issues that arise locally and to identify emerging force-wide trends. Surveys are also commissioned by the police and crime commissioner to help understand public concerns.

However, we are concerned by the number of staff who told us they were too busy to engage with the public or deal with local concerns. This is something the force should closely monitor to ensure that its good work is not undermined.

Stop and search and Taser are two ways that the police can prevent crime and protect the public. However, they can be intrusive and forceful methods, and it is therefore vital the police use them fairly and appropriately. HMIC found that Humberside Police is not compliant with the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme.

While the force has carried out a review of the number of Taser-trained officers and how they should be dispersed across the force area, HMIC remains concerned that more needs to be done to ensure sufficient supervision and oversight on the use of Taser. The force should also put in place sufficient oversight arrangements to better understand why Humberside has such a high use of Taser, to reassure itself that Taser is being used fairly and appropriately.

View the four questions for legitimacy

Other inspections

How well has the force performed in our other inspections?

In addition to the three core PEEL pillars, HMIC carries out inspections of a wide range of policing activity throughout the year. Some of these are conducted alongside the PEEL inspections (for instance, our 2016 leadership assessment); others are joint inspections.

Findings from these inspections are published separately to the main PEEL reports, but are taken into account when producing the rounded assessment of each force's performance.

Leadership

Last updated 25/02/2016

As part of HMIC’s annual all-force inspections into police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy (PEEL) in 2015, HMIC assessed how well led forces are at every rank and grade of the organisation and across all areas inspected in PEEL. We reviewed how well a force understands and is developing its leaders; whether it has set a clear and compelling future direction; and how well it motivates and engages the workforce.

The force has a clear vision of the style of leadership that it requires so it can improve its services and this has been communicated effectively across the organisation. The force did not identify problems with its new operating model until after it was implemented; however chief officers began to address the shortcomings once these were identified. Frontline staff showed collective leadership to reduce the impact on its services to the public arising from these problems, and the new chief officer team is working to address the problems arising from this change. The force has worked with staff and officers to improve its appraisal, development and welfare programmes.

View the four questions for leadership

Other reports

Last updated 22/02/2016

This section sets out the reports published by HMIC this year that help to better understand the performance of Humberside Police.

View other reports

Key facts

Force Area

1,357 square miles

Population

0.92m people 3% local 10 yr change

Workforce

75% frontline 78% national level
3.4 per 1000 population 3.6 national level
21% change in local workforce since 2010 15% national change since 2010

Victim-based crimes

0.07 per person 0.05 national level
Local 5 year trend (no change) National 5 year trend (no change)

Cost

53p per person per day local 55p per person per day national

Points of context provided by the force

The force covers four local authorities (both urban and rural), has a large port infrastructure and an international tourist, transport and trade network.

Among the population of 914,000, there are high levels of deprivation in urban areas and historically high levels of crime in comparison to peers.

Police and crime plan priorities

My pledge: To put the public and victims of crime at the centre of everything I do.

I have set three main outcomes in my Police and Crime Plan: reduce crime; protect the public and improve safety; along with improving the quality of services for victims.