Concerns raised over Wiltshire Police's performance

Wiltshire Police is failing in several areas and urgent improvements must be made, the police inspectorate has said.

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PEEL 2021/22 – An inspection of Wiltshire Police

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) graded Wiltshire Police’s performance across eight areas of policing and found the force was ‘inadequate’ in three areas and ‘requires improvement’ in the other five areas.

HMICFRS said the inadequate areas included how the force responds to the public, how it protects vulnerable people and strategic planning and value for money.

In June 2022, the force was moved into the inspectorate’s Engage monitoring process, which provides additional scrutiny and support to help forces make improvements.

Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary Wendy Williams said:

“I have serious concerns about Wiltshire Police’s performance, particularly how it responds to the public, protects vulnerable people and makes use of its resources.

“The force is missing opportunities to protect vulnerable and repeat victims of crime. It needs to improve the way it manages victims’ calls, so that all vulnerable people are identified. Some domestic abuse victims have received an unacceptable level of service and have continued to remain at risk. The force is not supervising investigations well enough and doesn’t always follow all investigative opportunities.

“More positively, the force has recently developed plans to address violence against women and girls and intends to make progress in how it understands and protects vulnerable people.

“Given our findings, we are now monitoring Wiltshire under our Engage process which provides additional scrutiny and support. In addition, I have been in regular contact with the Chief Constable and will continue to work with the force until the required vital improvements are made.

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PEEL 2021/22 – An inspection of Wiltshire Police

Notes

  1. In 2014, we introduced our police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy (PEEL) inspections, which assess the performance of all 43 police forces in England and Wales. Since then, we have been continuously adapting our approach and this year has seen the most significant changes yet.
  2. We are moving to a more intelligence-led, continual assessment approach, rather than the annual PEEL inspections we used in previous years. We have also changed our approach to graded judgments. We now assess forces against the characteristics of good performance, and we more clearly link our judgments to causes of concern and areas for improvement.
  3. We have also expanded our previous four-tier system of judgments to five tiers. As a result, we can state more precisely where we consider improvement is needed and highlight more effectively the best ways of doing things.
  4. However, these changes mean that it isn’t possible to make direct comparisons between the grades awarded this year with those from previous PEEL inspections. A reduction in grade,  particularly from good to adequate, does not necessarily mean that there has been a reduction in performance, unless we say so in the report.
  5. Read more about the new PEEL assessment framework 2021/22.
  6. For further information, please contact the HMICFRS Press Office on 07836 217 729 or HMICPressOffice@hmicfrs.gov.uk (e-mail address).