HC Deb 16 December 2003 vol 415 c861W
Ms Buck

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what use has been made by chief officers of police of accreditations under community safety accreditation schemes under section 41 of the Police Reform Act 2002. [143569]

Ms Blears

In total, six forces have used powers under section 41 of the Police Reform Act. Five forces have accredited 16 Vehicle Inspectors employed by the Vehicle Operator Services Agency (VOSA). The inspectors have been issued with the power to stop vehicles for the purpose of testing. This allows them to test vehicles without police assistance and so frees police officers to focus on other tasks. The five forces are Cambridgeshire, Greater Manchester, Northumbria, North Wales and Staffordshire.

In addition, Hampshire Police have accredited five employees of Southampton City Council, to enable them to be more effective in dealing with anti-social behaviour. Hampshire police received £20,000 central funding from the Home Office to help with the project costs of setting the scheme up.

The Home Office has allocated a total of £450,000 funding to 21 pathfinder forces (including Hampshire) in this financial year to assist them with setting up community safety accreditation schemes. The funded schemes will accredit those already conducting patrols in communities to enhance the reassurance that these staff provide and make them more effective in dealing with anti-social behaviour. Forces involved in the first tranche of schemes in this first phase of accreditation are mainly intending to accredit wardens employed in or by local authorities.

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