Police bosses rule out more privatisation

BOSSES at Lincolnshire Police have ruled out privatising neighbourhood policing after news that other forces may outsource that function.

Last month the county’s police authority signed a landmark £200 million contract with private security firm G4S to handle back office services.

The deal was the first of its kind in the country and will hand control of services such as IT, custody suites and firearms licensing to G4S.

At the weekend police outsourcing came into the national spotlight when it was revealed that West Midlands and Surrey forces wish to sign up deals with the private sector that may see neighbourhood policing taken on by private firms.

Lincolnshire Police Authority spokesman Alan Hardwick said Lincolnshire is unlikely to build on its own deal.

He said: “As far as we are concerned, the outsourcing that we have achieved is sufficient for Lincolnshire. We would not want to go any further with it.

“What they are doing, and we are definitely not doing, is moving towards civilians doing jobs which have traditionally been done by warranted police officers.”

Lincolnshire Police Authority’s contract with G4S will see 544 of the 900 civilian staff transferring to the company.

The deal should see a new custody suite built, with plans at the police headquarters site in Nettleham and rumours of another in Sutterton to cater for Boston and Spalding.