West Yorkshire Police has promised to act after getting a mixed report in its first annual Ofsted-style inspection of effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy.

And while it received a Good rating for preventing and reducing crime and tackling anti-social behaviour. It was rated as Requires Improvement for investigating crime by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary.

The results are being taken up by senior officers and there was a pledge to do more to help victims.

West Yorkshire’s temporary Chief Constable, Dee Collins, said: “Crime has fallen by 19% over the last four years and the pro-active work we have been doing, including using predictive policing methods to identify areas at risk, has seen a particular reduction in dwelling burglaries.

“We note the Inspectorate’s comments that the sustained focus on preventing and reducing burglaries should not be at the detriment of other crime priorities.

“In line with the Police and Crime Plan, we are increasing prioritisation in other areas, including the recruitment of additional investigators to tackle safeguarding and child sexual exploitation investigations following the allocation of funding by the Police and Crime Commissioner.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson
 

Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “I am pleased to see that the HMIC PEEL Assessment has highlighted the excellent work done by West Yorkshire Police regarding the Tour de France and successfully policing five EDL demonstrations.

“It shows that despite major challenges and officer/staff reductions effective policing is still being delivered which is testament to staff and officers.

“While HMIC has previously recognised the continuing work to improve crime recording practices, earlier concerns around data integrity have been taken seriously and I have met with the Deputy Chief Constable to understand the longer term action being taken to improve crime recording practices which is well underway.

“We need to ensure victims and witnesses are supported and that call handlers and staff are supported more on how to deal with domestic abuse incidents and ensure all the HMIC recommendations are considered carefully.

“Reporting of domestic violence and abuse is higher in West Yorkshire than many other forces and I believe that is partly down to increased awareness and victims knowing there is help and support available to them.

“Despite HMIC acknowledging improvements in the way West Yorkshire Police is effectively managing domestic abuse investigations in its crime inspection, more does need to be done around training of staff and consistencies in dealing with reports and complaints”.