Police Reform and Social Responsibility Bill
Shami Chakrabarti: I have to say that I and my colleagues at Liberty have in recent years been critical of attempts to politicise policing. That includes some senior police officers in recent years, who we thought were doing the opposite. They were trying to interfere in politics, just as there is a danger if politicians try to interfere in individual operations. Those were anomalies and wrong, but the system that is being proposed here will lead to a lot more of that in practice, particularly with the charismatic, mandated, local, elected police commissioner who will find commenting on high-profile operations, numbers and visibility irresistible. Some of those concerns have quite rightly been expressed by senior police officers, including the current Metropolitan Police Commissioner.