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Greater Manchester PEEL 2018

Legitimacy

How legitimately does the force treat the public and its workforce?

Last updated 01/05/2019
Good

Greater Manchester Police is good at treating the public and its workforce legitimately.

In our previous inspection, we judged Greater Manchester Police as good at treating the public fairly and this grading is carried forward.

Greater Manchester Police is good at behaving ethically and lawfully, but we found some areas for improvement. It should ensure it has an official process for staff to raise ethical questions.

It should make full use of the software it has to monitor IT systems to protect its data and prevent computer misuse.

It should ensure its wider workforce is trained in awareness of abuse of position for sexual purpose and its impact on the public.

The force is good at treating its workforce fairly, but we found some areas for improvement. The workforce is confident in the grievance process. But the force doesn’t deal with grievances in a timely manner. It has improved in this since 2017, and improvement must continue.

We saw that the force was working to improve its personal development review (PDR) process. This was an area for improvement in 2017, and the process still has gaps. We look forward to seeing the process fully implemented, used effectively and monitored force-wide.

In 2017, we also recommended improvements to the talent management system. The force has reviewed it, but it relies on the PDR process mentioned above. So, the force may not be providing fair opportunities for its entire workforce. This is an area for improvement.

Questions for Legitimacy

1

To what extent does the force treat all of the people it serves with fairness and respect?

Good

This question was not subject to detailed inspection in 2018/19, and our judgment from the 2017 legitimacy inspection has been carried over. However, we reviewed a representative sample of 297 stop and search records to assess the reasonableness of the recorded grounds. We found that 86 percent had reasonable grounds recorded. Therefore, about six in seven stop and search encounters have reasonable grounds recorded. Our assessment is based on the grounds recorded by the searching officer and not the grounds that existed at the time of the search.

In our 2017 legitimacy report, we recommended that all forces should:

  • monitor and analyse comprehensive stop and search data to understand reasons for disparities;
  • take action on those; and
  • publish the analysis and the action by July 2018.

We found that the force has complied with some of this recommendation. But it doesn’t identify the extent to which find rates differ between people from different ethnicities and across different types of searches (including separate identification of find rates for drug possession and supply-type offences). It also isn’t clear that the force monitors enough data to identify the prevalence of possession-only drug searches or the extent to which these align with local or force-level priorities.

We reviewed the force’s website and found no mention of analysis the force had carried out to understand reasons for disparities or explain subsequent action taken.

We will continue to monitor progress in this area.

2

How well does the force ensure that its workforce behaves ethically and lawfully?

Good

Areas for improvement

  • The force should ensure it has a process for the workforce to refer and discuss ethical concerns.
  • The force should ensure its anti-corruption unit can fully monitor all of its computer systems, including mobile data, to proactively identify data breaches, protect the force’s data and identify computer misuse.
  • The force should improve its workforce’s knowledge and understanding of the abuse of position for a sexual purpose.

Greater Manchester Police is good at behaving ethically and lawfully, but we found some areas for improvement.

The force is good at maintaining an ethical culture. Officers and staff feel they can raise ethical questions with supervisors. But they weren’t aware of an official process for doing this.

The force has no backlogs in the vetting of staff and officers. We were pleased to see this improvement since our 2017 legitimacy inspection.

The force is good at managing corruption risk. However, we found it had a very low number of entries in the gifts and hospitality register. The force told us that, with the overwhelming public response to the Manchester Arena attack in 2017, it decided to stop requiring staff to report gifts from the public. Staff we spoke to described some confusion about the policy, but knew where to get advice. We recommend the force explains clearly to staff what they need to do if they are offered gifts.

The force has software to monitor its computer systems, but wasn’t using it fully to proactively seek out data breaches. The force could use this software to protect its data and identify computer misuse.

Greater Manchester Police recognises the seriousness of abuse of position for sexual purpose. Despite its efforts to address this issue. we found that many members of the wider workforce had not been trained in awareness of abuse of position for sexual purpose and its impact on the public.

Detailed findings for question 2

3

To what extent does the force treat its workforce with fairness and respect?

Good

Areas for improvement

  • The force should improve how it manages grievances, so that it provides timely outcomes for officers and staff.
  • The force should ensure its process for assessment and development of officer and staff performance is fully implemented, used effectively and monitored force-wide.
  • The force should have a talent management system that is consistent, fair and accessible to all the workforce.

Greater Manchester Police is good at treating its workforce fairly, but we found some areas for improvement.

The force is improving fairness at work. Its staff survey participation levels have increased from 34 percent in 2016 to 51 percent. But we found that the force did not deal with grievances promptly and some files were incomplete. Consequently, the force can’t be confident that it deals effectively with grievances. However, staff and officers told us they were confident about using the procedure and the force has improved its processes since our inspection in 2017.

The force is striving to enhance the diversity of its workforce and make it more representative of the people it serves. It analyses selection processes and misconduct investigations. It uses this analysis to identify and address disproportionality.

Greater Manchester Police supports wellbeing through preventative measures and by managing trauma risk. The force’s wellbeing panel reviews referrals to occupational health and manages medical assessments of new recruits. The force has ambitious recruitment plans for the next two years, which may affect the panel’s ability to meet demand. Staff and officers told us it was hard to access occupational health services, so people may remain away from work longer than they need to. The force may wish to consider giving clearer guidance on this.

In our 2017 legitimacy report, we gave Greater Manchester Police an area for improvement in its implementing and monitoring of a new personal development review (PDR) process. The process is now in place for officers, and the force plans to implement it for staff in 2019. But we found some gaps that mean the force can’t formally support performance development. The force should ensure it fully implements the process, and that it is used effectively and monitored force-wide.

Another area for improvement in 2017 was awareness of the talent management system. The force has reviewed its talent management. But it relies on the PDR process, which, as mentioned above, we found to have gaps. Presently, it applies only to officers, not staff. So the force can’t be confident that it is providing fair opportunities for all.

Detailed findings for question 3