“Policing in England and Wales is, as you know, based on the principle of policing by consent, which relies heavily on a relationship of mutual trust and respect between the police and the public. Trust is essential if the police are to receive information from the public which helps them to detect and combat crime. It is also essential to enable the public to feel able to seek the assistance and protection of police officers when necessary. The police have significant powers to intervene in our lives when they believe we need to be prevented from harming ourselves or others, or from committing acts of criminality. Their powers are such that there are even circumstances in which a police officer may lawfully take a life.”
“Given these powers, it is important that the public know that if police officers fail to uphold the very high professional standards expected of them, or break the law, their actions will be dealt with robustly. It is vital therefore that members of the public know how to make a complaint against the police, have confidence that the system will take their complaint seriously and believe it will be dealt with rigorously and fairly.”
“A key reason for the creation of the IPCC was widespread public concern about deaths and serious injuries in police custody and the policing of black communities. The predecessor body to the IPCC (the Police Complaints Authority) was not seen as sufficiently independent or robust in its oversight of the complaints system. Since the IPCC became operational in 2004, the Commission has investigated a significant number of cases which have caused high levels of public concern. These have ranged from deaths in custody, deaths and serious injuries following police contact through to matters of serious corruption.” Corruption in the Police Service in England and Wales
About the IPCC
- The IPCC was established by the Police Reform Act and became operational in April 2004.
- The IPCC is independent, making its decisions entirely independently of the police, government and complainants.
- Its primary statutory purpose is to increase public confidence in the police complaints system in England and Wales.
- The IPCC also investigates the most serious complaints and allegations of misconduct against the police in England and Wales, as well as handling appeals from people who are not satisfied with the way police have dealt with their complaint.
Justice and respect for human rights
- We use our authority and powers unflinchingly to help those who suffer injustice because of an abuse of police powers to obtain redress. Our activities support policing by consent and help to sustain justice.
- Equally, those against whom allegations have been made can be sure that the IPCC will be impartial and our activities timely and fair.
- Justice must be sure and proportionate. People who never make mistakes, never make anything. We discourage a blame culture amongst the police where ever appropriate and carefully managed risks are avoided. “What can we learn ?” is often a more useful question than “Who is to blame ?”
We demonstrate our independence by :
- Our resolve under pressure.
- The people we appoint.
- The work we undertake.
- Scrupulously avoiding conflicts of interest.
- Our organisational culture.
- The communications we make.
- We know that gaining the benefits of diversity is not easy.
- However we are open to the experience, insights and skills of people of different race, religion, ethnic origin, gender, sexuality, disability and other backgrounds from both inside the IPCC and from external partners.
- If the IPCC is to hold the police to account then it must maintain the highest standards itself.
- We need to act, and be seen to act, with integrity in both our private and professional lives.
- We act with integrity in our public statements, acceptance of hospitality and gifts, dealings with stakeholders and use of public funds.
- We will be honest about our mistakes.
- We seek maximum disclosure and regular communications with all parties during the course of a complaint.
- The Commission meets in public where possible and communicates information about its work and performance widely.
- We carefully define where we need to maintain confidentiality or secrecy for operational reasons so that we can protect individuals and retain the confidence of other agencies.
- We work with stakeholders to develop our policies.
- We learn lessons from what we do and take responsibility for our decisions.
- We make sure that communication is two way between staff and Commissioners and that they share information and experiences.
- Commissioners accept corporate responsibility for the work of the IPCC.
- London (London and south east region)
- Cardiff (Wales and south west region)
- Sale (North region – north west)
- Wakefield (North region – north east)
Sadly there is no such agency as the ITCC. An independent and accountable organization that possesses the skills needed to not only investigate allegations but able to take firm and decisive action.
Gove, unions and others tinker with peripheral trivia – anonymity – and the teacher is made to feel reassured and grateful. They are told that they might be able to now ‘enjoy’ anonymity !
In reality, who cares ? Anonymity is nothing – the magician continues to deceive and distract through misdirection.
Until those in power admit and confront the corruption that is rife throughout education and LEAs then nothing will ever change.
Unions are to blame – they must represent their members at all costs; purely out of self interest and self preservation.
The police are not unique – they are responsible for the safety, security and care of our society and our lives. But so are teachers, doctors, nurses, health workers and carers … can’t they all come under the same shelter and umbrella of the IPCC ?
The police were found to be corrupt – we are all human – subject to a host of pressures … only when we confess and acknowledge that corrupt behaviour is a fact of life can solutions be found that might protect us all.
My case is now 5 years old - I am innocent. The school and LEA had concluded that I had committed an unprovoked, vicious and violent assault on a 5 year old child to such an extent that she suffered post-traumatic abuse for over a year. (The original allegation had been a smack on the hand !) I should have been sacked for gross misconduct - assault is what it is and there is no freedom to choose otherwise, sacking was the only option – but, to prevent me from taking the case to a tribunal, they reinstated me. They knew that I was too ill to work and sacked me 6 months later without ever offering to help my recovery.
Why should they have done this ? Understand this; assault on a child is a dirty accusation – whatever happens, whatever the conclusion and outcome there will be damage. Damage to the child, parents, school and the teacher – this is inevitable. But the path of minimum damage is to get rid of the teacher – at least everyone else comes out of the mess relatively unblemished.
At best, you are processed by ‘well intended’ inexperienced lay people – but they can be far from impartial … they all have a vested interest in the outcome for they run the school and are accountable to the parents.
The term ‘natural justice’ is banded about by those who do not understand the terms of law. It means that you are entitled to be judged by independent jurors who have no vested interest in the outcome. It means that the investigative process will be equally fair. These criteria can not be fulfilled under the current system.
I am innocent. This means that many people cheated and lied to achieve their own ends :
(Missing from the list is the 5 year old child – but her testimony was never submitted as evidence as it never existed ! Elaine Haddon and Elaine Callan, both witnesses at the time of the alleged assault, confirmed that the little girl showed no reaction either at the time or later and neither did any child in proximity. There was no evidence that it ever happened !)
Why should they all lie ? That’s what I want to know too ! I tried asking Helen Denton at Lancashire County Council on several occasions. She said that opening my case was in nobody’s best interests ! But all of the evidential notes, letters, etc. still exist – so why doesn’t someone ask her again ?
The investigative police officer of my case pointed out the paradox of my situation. The existence of evidence can establish guilt but the absence of evidence can not prove innocence !
The school’s investigative process is not based on ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ but solely on ‘balance of probability’ - ‘could I have done it ?’ I suppose that they could have concluded that I teleported from the bridge of the USS Enterprise into the classroom too - anything is possible when there is no evidence, just make up a story and it does not need to be convincing !