Development Of Community Safety Accreditation Schemes (CSAS) Within Merseyside
CSAS was introduced under the Police Reform Act 2002 to enable Police Forces and their partners to work more effectively with organisations and employees who positively contribute towards community safety.
CSAS is invaluable in extending the formal policing of communities by using the skills and professional abilities of non-police operators in partnership with the police. The real strength of CSAS is combining knowledge and operational capability for the good of a specific community or location.
Schemes work under carefully monitored jointly agreed protocols covering operational matters such as information and intelligence sharing, joint operations, performance monitoring and general working relationships between the police, the CSAS employee and the location they work in. Where appropriate people accredited under CSAS, known as Accredited Persons (AP), may be given limited 'police' powers to help them deal with low level offending such as littering or disorderly behaviour. They may also be given the power to require people suspected of offending to provide their details.
Community Safety Accreditation is about focusing combined resources to deliver a first class service to our communities.
Schemes are not intended to replace police officers or lead to noticeable increases in detections; however in time we should see reductions in disorder coupled with increased intelligence and public confidence in partnership 'policing'.
In partnership with Local Authorities, several Police Forces have successfully utilised CSAS to accredit traffic management companies with, for example, the power to direct traffic at planned events. The advantage of this type of CSAS is that disruption to local residents and road users is kept to a minimum whilst reliance on the police is significantly less.
Merseyside Police has decided to run a pilot Community Safety Accreditation Scheme in respect of Traffic Management.
The pilot will focus on the following powers relating to events planned across the county - they are:
- Power to control traffic for purposes other than escorting a load of exceptional dimensions.
- Paragraph 8B of Schedule 5 to the Police Reform Act 2002 (inserted by paragraph 20 of Schedule 8 to the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005).
- Power to require name and address: Road Traffic Offences.
- Paragraph 3A of Schedule 5 to the Police Reform Act 2002 (inserted by paragraph 19 of Schedule 8 to the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005).
Relevant agencies are invited to apply for accreditation, providing they fit the specified criteria stated within the Police Reform Act 2002. Further details available in the Guide attached.
The accreditation period is for 3 years but will be initially reviewed within the first 12 months. The Chief Constable has the right to withdraw accreditation from the accredited company and/or any accredited person at any time within the specified period. The scheme will be monitored by the Community Engagement Unit and the force Roads Policing Unit.
Further development of CSAS within Merseyside Police is ultimately an operational decision for the Chief Constable. Merseyside Police currently views such schemes as a real opportunity not only for the force but also for our partners and therefore we welcome your views by way of consultation.
For more information please contact the Community Engagement Unit - Sergeant Keith Burke on 0151 777 8527 or Rebecca Johnson on 0151 777 4182 or via Rebecca.A.Johnson@merseyside.police.uk.