Police transport companies are in crisis and the public needs to be made aware that these companies are not doing the job they are supposed to do, according to a new report.
The Independent Commission Against Corruption has been commissioned to look into how policing and transport services are funded and the government has said it is aware of the issues raised in the report.
Its report comes just days after the Government was criticised for not being transparent about the use of police transport vans in areas where police are deployed, including London and the South West.
The report has identified that the Department for Transport is spending millions of pounds each year on policing transport services, but the figures are unclear.
The findings, published in the Independent, have been criticised by the Police Federation, which said they would make policing more difficult.
It said it was concerned that the report was only being released to inform the public, rather than the police themselves, as this could potentially be a “misleading and misleading document” for the public to use.
The Federation said it did not support the use or misuse of police vans, as they had been used by the Metropolitan Police in the past.
The police said they had spent around £1.5m over the past 12 months on police transport.
However, the report said this was a “lapse in understanding” of the role of police in policing and how transport can be funded.
The Police Federation has said that the use and misuse of transport services is “a serious issue” and called for a “thorough review of the funding arrangements for policing transport”.
“There is a lack of understanding in the wider public about the role policing can play in the community and how that can be achieved,” it said.
It added: “The Department for Police and the Home Office have been negligent in their role of funding police transport.”
The Police Association of Great Britain said it “strongly supports” the Independent Commission against Corruption’s recommendations, but was disappointed that the Government has yet to publicly commit to reforming policing and its transport funding.
“This report confirms that the current funding arrangements are inadequate and that policing and the transport sector are still failing to meet the demands of policing in the 21st century,” a spokesperson said.
“It also shows the Government is failing to ensure the safety and security of the public and is unwilling to address the issue of policing’s future.”
Police Association of Northern Ireland (PAI) general secretary Jim Sheridan said the findings highlighted the “disastrous and disastrous” relationship between policing and policing services.
“These findings are alarming and reinforce the need for urgent reform to policing,” he said.
Police Minister Tracey Crouch told the BBC: “This is a government that’s very much aware of its failings and I would ask the public not to jump to conclusions.”
We need to work out where this funding gap is and what we can do about it.
“That is the focus of the police transport taskforce that is currently looking at how we can close that gap.”
‘Too much’ transport Police transport vans have a long history of using police as a public relations tool.
In 2014, the then Mayor of London Boris Johnson and his wife were photographed at a taxi rank at 10 Downing Street where a police transport van was parked, just weeks after the death of Jo Cox.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission has also raised concerns about how transport companies handle complaints.
In May, the Government said it would introduce a “robust system” to ensure police services “remain free from excessive use”.
“This will enable our forces to take all reasonable steps to ensure that the police are using the powers they have,” a spokesman said.
“There is currently no provision in our system for the use by police of a transport vehicle in a public way.”
Transport Minister Chris Grayling told the Today programme he welcomed the Independent Commissioner’s report.
“I have been very clear in the last six months that we need to look at the issues around policing and we have had a very good look at some of the things we are looking at, but I am pleased with the progress we have made so far,” he added.
“I think we are making good progress in terms of the way we do policing.”
What do you think about the report?
Let us know in the comments section below.