9 November 2012

15 November:  the day  we vote for our Police & Crime Commissioners. How do we decide who vote for? 

There's a list of people in our local paper this week, giving their 'take' on the job but none of them live around here so I've never heard of them, only one of the ten is a woman, and what criteria should I be looking for anyway?

Here's a link to a site which tells us what the holder of the job will actually do: http://www.aboutmyvote.co.uk/pcc.aspx.  According to this site, every home had a leaflet delivered in late October explaining about the elections and what we should do, or it can be downloaded from the above site (http://www.aboutmyvote.co.uk/PDF/PCC-booklet-public-info-FINAL-ENGLAND-English-web.pdf).

No, we haven't received a leaflet here, although we have received our polling cards.  Often we miss out as we live up a long drive, behind another house, even the postman didn't know we existed.

What is there job and will the holder have any clout?  What are the skills needed for the job?  Is the job well paid, and if so will that attract the wrong sort of people?  Why are we being told the candidates' political affiliation?  Should the police be political?  According to the site, this is what the job entails: 

The Police and Crime Commissioner role includes:
  • meeting the public regularly to listen to their views on policing
  • producing a police and crime plan setting out local policing priorities
  • deciding how the budget will be spent
  • appointing Chief Constables and dismissing them if needed.
The downloadable leaflet only explains how to fill in the form, not what to look for in a candidate.  

I've just found some links which may be helpful: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-19946777 and http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-19521181 gives the candidates and their statements.  So now have more information, need to decide who to vote for?  But it's the age-old question - will my vote count?

16th November: Well, like many people I didn't vote yesterday.  The reason was I didn't see any point in voting for someone I'd never heard of and it also seems odd that many of the candidates represented political parties.  
What has policing to do with political parties.  I can understand that it relates to politics and policites.  But not to party politics.
Unfortunately, the attitude of politicians in the media is that it's brilliant that so many people voted (15% turnout, with one polling station in Wales reporting NO voters!) - and that we'll get used to the system eventually! 
See:  http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/9684239/Fears-for-democracy-as-low-turnout-for-new-police-bosses-prompts-inquiry.html#

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