Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Devon and Cornwall Police Authority – white, male and English!

If you have ever heard of the Devon and Cornwall Police Authority (DCPA) and wondered what it was all about, you may be interested in the following…


In brief, the DCPA works like a Governing body of a school, but none of the teachers are allowed to attend meetings as members. This is supposed to give them some sense of independence. On their website, the DCPA say that:

The Devon and Cornwall Police Authority has a duty to “secure the maintenance of an efficient and effective police service” for Devon and Cornwall.

Some of their responsibilities are listed below:

• Consults With the Public
• Sets Policing Priorities and Targets
• Holds the Chief Constable to account and scrutinises performance throughout the year
• Secures Continuous Improvement
• Monitors the Force Complaints Procedure & Complaints Against Senior Officers
• Appoints Senior Police Officers
• Sets the Budget for the Police Force and the Police element of the Council Tax
• Operates the Independent Custody Visitor Scheme
• Community engagement and consultation


The Devon and Cornwall Police Authority has 19 Members - 10 Councillors, 3 Lay Justices, 6 Independents. All Members are appointed to the Police Authority for a fixed term and the membership can change during the year.

Of the 19 Members, there are 5 who live and work in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. There is Independent Member, Joanna Norton, who has an address in Cornwall and an address in Exeter and it is not clear where her interests lie, although she is a School Governor in Wadebridge. Nevertheless of the 10 Councillors, 4 are from Cornwall.

The Cornwall members on the Devon and Cornwall Police Authority are:

Graeme Hicks
Cornwall County Councillor, Independent
Mike Hicks
Isles of Scilly Councillor, Independent
Bryan Preston
Cornwall County Councillor, Liberal Democrat
Jeremy Rowe
Cornwall County Councillor, Liberal Democrat
Carl Wallin JP
Cornwall Lay Justice

Joanna Norton
Independent Member

These statistics reveal that out of 19 members of the DCPA only 5 are living and working permamently in Cornwall, with one Independent Member who has an address in Cornwall and one in Devon.

It does not appear to me that Cornwall is unfairly represented on the DCPA.

In addition, there are only 5 women members of the DCPA and all members are white. The majority of members are of course from Devon, England which is where their HQ are based.

If you would like to complain about this, please write to:

Devon and Cornwall Police Authority,
PO Box 229
Exeter, EX2 5YT
(01392) 268333
(01392) 268330

As has been said time and again on this Blog, Devon and Cornwall Police are a colonial force and the DCPA are one of the reasons why.

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