Paul Crossley, an experienced local community leader from Bath, has been announced as the Liberal Democrat candidate for Avon & Somerset Police & Crime Commissioner.
Local people across the Avon and Somerset force area will have the chance to vote for a new Commissioner in elections to be held on Thursday 5th May 2016.
The Commissioner’s role is to hold the service to scrutiny and account on their behalf.
Paul’s top priorities are to:
- Improve the way public services and communities work together;
- Cut the costs of the Commissioner’s office.
Paul was the Leader of Bath and North East Somerset Council from 2002-7 and from 2011-15, turning it into one of the most successful Councils in the area with low unemployment, high investment, great schools and low crime.
Paul Crossley said: “I am delighted and honoured to have been selected as the Liberal Democrat candidate. My experience running a large Council enables me to improve efficiency whilst cutting waste and bureaucracy.
“I have the highest regard for the people who make the Police their career. I want to help Avon and Somerset Police be the best and most effective Police Force in the country.
“My full manifesto will be issued at the start of the election in early April and I encourage all residents to have their say in the vote on May 5th.”
Police Officers, PCSOs and Special Constables want to make a difference and keep us safe.
Paul believes that they need the personnel, equipment and resources to do this. Since 2010 the number of police in the area has reduced by over 500. Far too much police time is spent on issues that should be addressed by other services, for example for those relating to people who are vulnerable or with mental health problems.
Paul believes this is a shared responsibility across the public sector and much more partnership working is needed.
As your Police and Crime Commissioner, Paul Crossley says he will prioritise five areas:
- Closer working with Councils, Health and Social Services to ensure that people with mental health problems get the proper care they need rather than ending up in a police cell because there is nowhere else to go.
- Rejuvenate community schemes such as Neighbourhood Watch and Farm Watch to ensure that communities feel involved and want to work with community based policing. Encourage the work of the ‘Street Pastor’ schemes that help keep the city and town centres safe at night and also help people who have had a good night out get home safely
- Increase the use of restorative justice and work to ensure that proceeds from crime are reclaimed from criminals and returned to victims and communities affected by criminal behaviour, and improve the resolution rate in solving crimes so that victims of crime can get closure on the event and not feel blighted by worry.
- Ensure that young people at risk of getting into a life of crime are diverted into positive channels for their lives.
- Reduce bureaucracy, to enable police to spend more time working in the community and less behind a desk, and cut the size of the office of the PCC to save vital funds.