Cameron calls for radical improvements in police performance

Conservative leader David Cameron has called for major police reform designed to radically improve performance.

He will call for changes that would allow badly-performing police officers to be sacked, while giving the best new incentives to do well.

In a speech in East London, Cameron said: “You can’t be tough on crime unless you are tough on police reform.”

“Police officers must be made more accountable to local communities,” he said. “Police pay and conditions must be modernised to ensure much better police performance. And that means, among other things, making it easier to sack bad officers.”

Cameron outlined his five priorities:

  • local flexibility for pay and conditions
  • reform of police pensions
  • the ability to sack bad officers
  • an end to the situation where “a relatively large number of officers are kept on restricted duties on full pay”
  • a crackdown on second jobs.

He said the reforms would mean chief constables would have greater discretion about the balance of staffing in their forces, plus new flexibility in police recruitment, with enhanced entry schemes, “so talented people and professionals to join the police later in their careers and at all ranks”.

“The police should be able to attract recruits of the highest calibre from all backgrounds, and to provide the continuous training and career development which highly motivated people need,” he said.

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