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https://www.justiceinspectorates.gov.uk/hmicfrs/recommendation/cheshire/8843/

Shortage of investigators

We found that the police service has 17 percent fewer investigators than it needs. Most forces have a substantial shortage in qualified detectives and other investigators. This constitutes a continuing national crisis.
It will take time to address this crisis. The National Police Chiefs’ Council lead on investigative resilience has made a strong start in analysing why this is the case. He has also recommended what national bodies and individual forces should do about it.

It is vital that all chief constables act on these recommendations so that there is a nationally co-ordinated and planned response. We will keep monitoring the extent to which investigative capacity and capability meet demand in the integrated PEEL assessment in 2018.

Recommendation 2

By September 2018, all forces with a shortage in qualified detectives and/or other investigators should develop an action plan. The plan should set out in detail what the force will do to address the shortage in the short, medium and long term. It should be in line with the national plan to develop investigative capacity and capability that all chief constables in England and Wales have agreed.

This plan should draw on the information in the force management statement about:

• the investigative demand the force expects to face in the next four years; and • how the force will change and improve the condition, capacity, capability, serviceability, performance and security of supply of its workforce and other assets to cope with that demand.

To make sure the plans are consistent, the National Police Chiefs’ Council lead on investigative resilience has agreed to provide advice on the areas each plan should cover by April 2018.

[on]22nd March 2018 [status]awaiting-review[/status][/on][on]4th June 2018 [status]being-progressed[/status][/on][on]4th June 2018 [comment]

The constabulary is progressing this recommendation. The strategic lead is the head of HR. A business lead has been appointed. Strategic oversight is provided at People Board which is chaired by the constabulary T/DCC. A further detailed update will be provided.

[/comment][/on][on]17th August 2018 [comment]

The constabulary have completed a review of its detective resilience and capability and has an action plan. In doing so the constabulary has considered the advice raised by NPCC National Crime Coordination Committee.The current position reviewed in May 2018 showed 96% of budgeted posts were filled with 64.8% being accredited to PIP2. There is a plan for the ongoing accreditation through the ICIDP programme that will deliver at least 4 courses per year allowing 56 investigators each year to be trained to allow for succession planning. The FMS for the constabulary predicts future detective capacity and capability problems and the action plan has short, medium and long term actions which include the exploration of direct entry, development of civilian investigators roles to cope with demand surge, and a PIP2 agency bank. I would consider this recommendation is suitable for closure and detective capacity and capability will be inspected as part of the integrated PEEL inspection programme.

[/comment][/on][on]17th August 2018 [status]complete[/status][/on][on]17th August 2018 [comment]

The terms of this recommendation have been addressed and there is an appropriate action plan in place to address the continued pressure on detective numbers in the force. I am satisfied that the recommendation is complete though the issue of detective numbers will continue to be monitored as part of the ongoing IPA schedule.

[/comment][/on]