Dyfed-Powys Police and Crime Commissioner Dafydd Llywelyn, reflects on first year in office

12-May-2017

A year on from the Police and Crime Commissioner elections, the commissioner says he has taken some significant steps towards reforming the police force, and delivering better services for communities.

Dafydd Llywelyn said: “I have worked hard to repay the faith our communities put in me a year ago and will continue to do so. I am pleased with some of the progress made in the last 12 months, but I am not complacent.  There continues to be significant challenges ahead, and a lot of further important work to be done.”

Since coming into office, the Commissioner has appointed a new Chief Constable and a new leadership team. He was grateful for the response of the workforce and from communities, when he set out to establish the type of Chief Constable that was required for Dyfed-Powys Police. The Commissioner and Chief Constable Mark Collins work closely, and they have begun attending community meetings together so that the public have a chance to discuss issues and challenge them face to face.

In terms of finances, he has worked to secure the best financial deal for Dyfed-Powys and met with the UK Policing Minister to discuss the future funding formula. His decision to ask for an increase in the precept was not taken lightly, but followed consultation that determined that our communities were willing to pay more for policing. The increase in budget will enable him to move ahead with plans to re-invest and implement the re-structuring and installation of CCTV across the Dyfed-Powys area.  It will also enable enhancement to services provided to our most rural communities and improvements to be made in areas identified though HMIC inspections resulting in a more favourable grading.

He has invested heavily in the Cyber Crime Unit, to tackle head on the ever increasing threat and harm caused by cyber crime; has secured 8 new officers who are dedicated to protecting vulnerable people; and has invested £180,000 per annum across the four counties to support the work of the Youth Offending and Prevention Teams, to prevent young people from entering the criminal justice system and to attempt to break the cycle of re-offending.

Additionally, he has recently announced funding that is available for community groups equating to £75,000 by launching the Commissioners Community Funding. It offers grants of up to £5,000 to charities, voluntary organisations and community groups so they can develop ideas that have a positive impact on the areas they work in.

Mr Llywelyn reviewed and restructured his office and has saved £100,000 in running costs, which has gone towards the previously mentioned investments.

In March, he launched his Police and Crime Plan, and said: “As Police and Crime Commissioner, the security and safety of the residents served by Dyfed-Powys Police is my priority.  Through the Police and Crime Plan I have set the strategic direction and priorities for Dyfed-Powys Police for the next 5 years. Partnership working is fundamental to delivering a joined-up approach to tackling the challenges that face all public services, such as a reduction in finances, the increasing diversity of our population and the rapid advances in technology. I am working closely with community safety and criminal justice partners to ensure that services are effective and efficient at keeping people safe, supporting victims and bringing people to justice. With our partners, we will explore opportunities for the joint commissioning of services to help make our communities safer.”

‘Goleudy’ Victim & Witness Services is a great example of a service commissioned by the Police and Crime Commissioner, and recently opened its lines to members of our communities who need us most – victims and witnesses of crime. It is an independent service, co-located within Dyfed-Powys Police Headquarters. The advantage of co-locating the service is that the team are better placed to assist victims with their enquiries and resolve any dissatisfaction victims and witnesses might feel with the way in which the case is progressing.

Mr Llywelyn led what will be an annual St David’s Day Conference, to discuss the Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (VAWDASV) Wales Act 2015. Safeguarding the vulnerable is a key priority for the Commissioner, and this Act is intended to improve the response of the public sector in Wales to gender based violence, domestic abuse and sexual violence through ensuring consistency in the delivery of preventative, protective and supportive services.  As a consequence the Force have charged 2 separate individuals for coercive control under new legislation.

Dafydd Llywelyn said: “Since I was elected, the challenges ahead have been clear to me. The force are making great strides with body worn video and mobile technology, but there is still work to do to make the service as effective and efficient as possible. I am clear on my priorities: to keep our communities safe; safeguarding the vulnerable; protecting our communities from serious threats; and connecting with communities. I will continue to hold the Chief Constable to account in respect of delivery of these. I am confident that we can return to being a leading force in England and Wales.”

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