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West Yorkshire praised for diversity and stop and search work

The force has described its recent PEEL assessment as the best performance report in its history

In what West Yorkshire described as the best PEEL assessment in its history, officers were rated outstanding for how they respond to the public.

Neighbourhood policing was highlighted for its focus on early intervention and hadn’t distracted activity from other priorities.

The force was rated as 'Outstanding' at preventing crime and anti-social behaviour and disrupting serious and organised crime. There was a ‘Good’ verdict for protecting vulnerable people and supporting its workforce.

Call handling and deployment processes are 'Adequate'. Out of 10 areas reviewed, none were rated as inadequate.

It was one of three forces to have its assessments published; the other post-COVID reports out today were for Northamptonshire and West Midlands.

HM Inspector Andy Cooke said: ““I am impressed by the force’s well-established approach to community engagement.

“The force has also done significant work to analyse its stop and search activity, and in the overwhelming majority of cases there are reasonable grounds for that activity to take place.”

He added: “There is good governance in place to make sure that stop and search is scrutinised properly by senior leaders. The force can show that it treats the communities of West Yorkshire fairly when they are subject to stop and search.”

There are areas for improvement, he revealed: “The force needs to improve how it identifies vulnerability at the first point of contact because its risk assessments aren’t always effective and don’t always accurately consider the need for support or safeguarding. I am reassured that the force has taken immediate steps to address this after our inspection.”

The force responded with praise for its frontline officers – and a warning that its achievements were in spite of pressure on resources.

West Yorkshire Police Chief Constable John Robins QPM said: “This is the best inspection report in the Force’s history. It is all the more impressive considering we are one of the largest and most complex police force areas in the UK and we also hold more national and regional responsibilities than any other force in the country.

“The women and men of West Yorkshire Police deserve the credit for this outstanding performance.  It is the police officers, staff and volunteers who day in, day out are delivering the best possible service they can to victims, witnesses and those who need our help.  They do this whilst under significant financial, resourcing and demand pressures.”

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