Police Scotland

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 8th February 2018.

Alert me about debates like this

The First Minister:

As, I assume, Richard Leonard knows, a governance review is under way. Indeed, it is due to be published soon and it will no doubt make recommendations for change. I will be very happy at that stage to go into the detail of what those recommendations might be and how the Scottish Government might respond to them.

Richard Leonard mentioned parliamentary oversight. As I have just said in exchanges with Ruth Davidson, Mary Fee, as convener of the Justice Sub-Committee on Policing, was involved in the process around the appointment of the chair of the Scottish Police Authority. We will, of course, continue to listen when sensible proposals are made.

However, I come back to the fundamental point that nobody on the Scottish National Party benches is seeking to deny the challenges that we have faced around the leadership of Police Scotland. I say very seriously that they are deeply regrettable. However, the central point is that we have an excellent police force in this country that is working hard day in, day out to make sure that crime is at a 43-year low, and we should not lose sight of that fact; sometimes when I listen to the debates in the chamber, I think that some members do occasionally lose sight of it.