Policing should never be political

I spoilt my ballot because i feel disenfranchised with current government policy of politicising the nation’s policing.

Political medling should not be a day to day concern of the police force, and the police forct should not be used to research a political party’s particular ideas about crime prevention / custody.

I am glad i spoilt my ballot, and hope that the candidates see my ballot. I gave each of them 1 & 2. Totally equal, in response to a total screw-up

What do I know?!

Surely there are people with knowledge, experience and expertise that equip them to make a good decision? Surely someone already gets paid to make these kinds of decisions? How were people appointed before? What on earth do I know? So why should I get a say? What am I supposed to base my decision on?

I also don’t approve of the fact that we had to look up information on the candidates ourselves. I arrived at the polling station never having heard of any of the names, didn’t know any information about any of them – and yet could still have a say? That makes no sense whatsoever.

I voted for myself. I read that Commissioners get paid £65k-£100k. I offered to do it for £50k. Just waiting to see if my application has been successful. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Unable to choose a candidate / A Boris in every county, not city

Having received only a leaflet about the Conservative candidate, recognising only the Liberal Democrat candidate from local politics and having read about others via the choosemypcc website I couldn’t decide on any of them.

‘A Boris in every county’ refers to David Cameron’s ‘A Boris in every city’, said in support of referendums for directly elected mayors in May 2012.

I am in favour of localism, greater democracy and accountability. This is not it: the leader of the county council, who also sits on the local enterprise partnership (an improvement on the RDA), was elected in a private meeting of his party, in the same city park-and-ride charges vary because some are controlled by the city council and others the county council, and this new PCC will cover three counties.

If a Mayor is good enough for London, it should be available to the rest of the country, not merely cities. Counties (of some description) are areas that many people identify with and all of us live in.

I support the Prime Minister in wanting big local champions. I urge him to be bold and allow for this choice.

Police should not be politicised.

One person in overall charge of three very diverse counties! I prefer a committee who may not be elected but represent a more diverse population (yes, the police authority).

Police should do their work without fear or favour – this will change.

Our country will pay the price for this frightening decision by this coalition government.

Poorly run political gimmick with serious consequences

I can’t decide who is more culpable for the shambles that we are witnessing today, the Government for pushing this expensive and apparently unwanted political gimmick through onto a largely indifferent electorate and laying the foundations for greater party interference on the Police than ever before. Or the largely pathetic candidates themselves for their lackluster campaigning, if you could call it a campaign. I have not had one shread of campaign literature through my door and if I hadn’t looked online would know absolutely nothing about the candidates.

This total lack information and effort from the candidates shows in my view that these candidates failed those who they should be most accountable to even before the ballot: The most vulnerable in our society. Be they elderly, in poverty, suffering domestic abuse or addiction or living in the most deprived areas, it is these people who most need police help regularly are likely to be the most ill-informed in this election.

In mitigation of for the candidates the lack of any central funding for the normal free mailshots has meant that any candidate wishing to leaflet will have to pay simply unaffordable costs for communication with their vast constituencies and the £5000 needed to run means that most good quality Independents were put off leaving most areas (although not my own), with the usual suspect party candidates.

This election has been an affront to democracy from the start, but I fear that it will only go down hill from here as we live with the consequences of hastily adopting the manner in whic hsmall US towns choose their local Sheriff as a means of appointing an offical with responsibility for poi
I can’t decide who is more culpable for the shambles that we are witnessing today, the Government for pushing this expensive and apparently unwanted political gimmick through onto a largely indifferent electorate and laying the foundations for greater party interference on the Police than ever before. Or the largely pathetic candidates themselves for their lackluster campaigning, if you could call it a campaign. I have not had one shread of campaign literature through my door and if I hadn’t looked online would know absolutely nothing about the candidates.

This total lack information and effort from the candidates shows in my view that these candidates failed those who they should be most accountable to even before the ballot: The most vulnerable in our society. Be they elderly, in poverty, suffering domestic abuse or addiction or living in the most deprived areas, it is these people who most need police help regularly are likely to be the most ill-informed in this election.

In mitigation of for the candidates the lack of any central funding for the normal free mailshots has meant that any candidate wishing to leaflet will have to pay simply unaffordable costs for communication with their vast constituencies and the £5000 needed to run means that most good quality Independents were put off leaving most areas (although not my own), with the usual suspect party candidates.

This election has been an affront to democracy from the start, this is the short-term consequence of this back-of-fag-packet omnishambolic policy. As for the long-term consequences of hastily adopting the manner in which small US towns choose their local Sheriff as a means of appointing an offical with responsibility for policing over vast areas and huge populations, only time will tell.

Not democratising

I’d love more democratic oversight of the police, but this is the opposite. Because of the efforts of a local woman we do have _some_ information about the candidates, but hustings was announced last minute and on fireworks night… so I couldn’t ask them the things I was most interested in. No mailshot. National party political agendas being brought into what should be locally determined decisions. Once they’re elected what are the processes for accountability to the public who elected them?

Sham democracy, unwanted choice

To begin with I intended to abstain because this is not a democratic appointment I’m comfortable with. It doesn’t fit into the pattern of political accountability that we have to bring out one detail of policy like this; and I’m uncomfortable that when local democracy is so poorly engaged in, we pull out the rabble-rousing aspect of crime policy to give this detail to.

However, with the shambolic run-up to the election, with so little publicity and no real opportunity for the broad electorate to hear from the candidates or to understand and compare their policies and motivations, it’s now even more important that a democratic mandate isn’t spuriously given to whoever wins the lottery or party tribal vote.