Police inspectors praise Fife force

Operations to bring policing closer to the community have been hailed.
Operations to bring policing closer to the community have been hailed.

AN independent police inspection has praised the Kingdom’s force for its overall strength and vision – but says there is still room for improvement.

‘The best value audit and inspection: Fife police authority’ by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary for Scotland (HMCIS) and Audit Scotland, was carried out on the local force recently.

It found that, in Fife, the force was “performing well” and hailed the vision of taking policing closer to residents through the community engagement model.

Last week, the Mail reported on a drop in certain low-level crimes which was attributed to police officers being asked to spend more time in their communities.

However, the report also highlighted areas where the force could do better.

There is scope, the report states, for Fife police to “take further steps” in relation to increases in reported domestic abuse and hate crime.

It added the success of the community engagement model could be enhanced by improving the way local community priorities are communicated internally.

Chief Constable Andrew Barker said: “I, and all my colleagues in Fife Constabulary, will continue to work with Fife Council, all partners and all communities, to deliver our vision of taking policing closer to the community.”

The report stated the community policing structure is effective, while partnership arrangements at a strategic and operational level are working well.

It added that, on detection rates, the force was outperforming most others in Scotland.

Chair of the council’s police transition committee, Gavin Yates, said: “Our aim is to make our communities safer and stronger with less fear of crime and anti-social behaviour; we are managing this in partnership in a number of ways, including effective community engagement.”