| Home | Free Articles for Your Site | Submit an Article | Advertise | Link to Us | Search | Contact Us |
This site is an archive of old articles

    Custom Search

vertical line

Article Surfing Archive

Hello, hello, hello! The Bitch Explores the Policeman's Top - and Bottom! - Articles Surfing

Well darlings,

From statistics released by the Home Office each year, a league table ranking the performance our 43 police forces is compiled by the Press Association. The Government's Police Performance Assessments rate the constabularies for seven different categories and they are: Reducing Crime; Investigating Crime; Promoting Safety; Providing Assistance; Citizen Focus; Resource Use; and Local Policing. For each of those categories a police force is rated as being either: "excellent", "good", "fair", or "poor", and from that assessment marks are allocated to each category which are, in the same order, worth 3 points, 2 points, and 1 point - with a "poor" result having a negative value of minus 1 point. The league table that results, although the Home Office doesn't agree with it, is widely accepted to show the official performance ranking for each individual police force from the worst to the best.

Humberside comes out as our worst police force over the last period (2005-2006), whilst our best is Staffordshire. All the national newspapers I've seen appear to be in agreement with that and have published the top and bottom of the league similarly, whilst the regional newspapers I've visited online have too reported the same statistics, along with those relevant for their own location, all seemingly accurately, and have then either given praise or had a moan about their local force.

All that being so, you can imagine my confusion when I discovered in my local newspaper the headlines to a sizeable article proclaiming: "It's official ' county police are the best in the country", with the article going on to tell me: "Impressive figures locally have helped contribute to Lancashire Police being this week named as the top-performing force in the country. In a new report, the Red Rose force tops the tree of all 46 constabularies in England and Wales for the third year running."

Had my local paper got it wrong? Surely not? I found myself becoming more than a little confused. What was the truth of the matter? Which version was correct? Who was the best, Lancashire or Staffordshire? And where had they found three more constabularies?

For a while it was all a little mind-blowing, but after downloading all the documentation and wading through it I think I've found a part of the answer. It's all to do with how you read statistics, or rather which part of them you choose to use. Put simply - and I'm not patronising you, it's just that to elaborate would literally take up too much space on here - the Government's Police Performance Assessments use a lot of data in order to come to their conclusions, those that are then used by the Press Association to produce the league table, but if you take just a part of that data: the regional baseline assessments, and it's a very important part of that data, then the Lancashire Police have for the past three years performed better than all the other forces.

Is it right to be that selective in order to celebrate? Well, why shouldn't it be? Despite coming top in many subjects your child may not be the actual top of the whole class - but would you still not want to celebrate all the excellence they had achieved? Lancashire may not have come top of the whole shebang as seen by the Press Association, but it has done remarkably well and is right up there amongst the leaders - overall leader is only a couple of spits away.

Facts and figures have a way of confusing people. Politicians love them. Very often they contain something for everybody - you just need to look for it. I've given up looking for the other three forces and I'm guessing they may have something to do with the likes of Transport Police.

From the Home Office and Government's Police Performance Assessments, the Lancashire Constabulary very notably scored: Reducing Crime - Good, status improved; Investigating Crime - Excellent, status stable; Promoting Safety - Fair, status stable; Providing Assistance - Good, status stable; Citizen Focus - Good, status improved; Resource Use - Good, status improved but capped due to poor performance in at least one component; and Local Policing - Good, status improved. That's 1 x Excellent, 5 x Good (but with 1 capped), and 1 x Fair. The score awarded for the league table was 14.

Staffordshire, the generally acclaimed best in the country - let's be fair and not try to take anything away from them, scored 4 x Excellent and 3 x Good - with no capping at all (18 points), whilst Humberside at the other end of the scale could only muster 5 x Fair, and 2 x Poor (3 points). Between our score of 14 points and Staffordshire's 18 points there was only Northumbria with 17 points - those couple of spits away!

However you choose to look at the statistics, the Lancashire Police Force deserve our unreserved and heartfelt commendations for all their efforts. Well done, the Lancashire Constabulary! We're proud of you! Keep up the good work!

Er, if you get a mo' could you pass a few tips on to the Wiltshire lot? I know I've asked before, but they seem to be losing it fast. They're way down the list, and I hear not doing too well coping with a 50 strong gang roaming the streets and mugging people in Swindon. You'd think they would be able to find that number of people creating hell in a town centre, wouldn't you? I wonder if the reason they can't has anything to do with the relocation of their police station to the relative countryside of South Marston, a place several miles away from Swindon town centre? Do we want pretty, boys - or pertinent? Okay then, we'll go for pretty! Bah! That was a Titanic decision, wasn't it?

Right, having pretty much got all that sorted, I'll now say hello to those who have skipped over the previous as being, "Too heavy, man!" and have jumped straight to here. You foolish people - it gets no better!

Moseying around the web in search of information on the subject just covered, I came across a poser put by someone on a government-related forum. The person asked: why if crime was reducing overall were there no places left in which to place juvenile offenders, and why were our prisons bursting at the seams when so many offenders these days are being released early or are not actually interned? If crime has really been decreasing, as the government insists it has been for many years now, who the hell are all these people filling up our penal establishments? Where do they come from? Hmm . . . I think I'll pass on that one! But it certainly provokes some thought, doesn't it?

And now I guess it's high time for another one of my despairing "state of the nation" stories. According to the Daily Mirror, from a total of 1,000 six to 14-year-olds who took part in a poll for the National Geographic Kids magazine, one in five of them couldn't locate the United Kingdom on a map of the world, and more than a third were unable to identify the United States. We're told that a spokesman from the teacher's union NASUWT has dismissed the poll as being "statistics" that fail to recognise the "excellent work" of teachers.

Really? Excellent work? Teaching exactly what?

I can remember that at six years old we were taking cans of food to school so we could place bits of the labels on our giant wall map of the world from whence the products came. We also stuck pictures (and sometimes our own drawings) of lions, tigers, kangaroos, elephants, and all kinds of animals (along with Cowboys and Indians, William Tell, Robin Hood etc.) on their respective countries. It must have worked for I'm sure by the time we were eight we could all basically find our way around the globe. We knew all the oceans, the continents, and could name quite a few countries. Don't they do this today in schools? If not - why not? Because it's old-fashioned? Well, so am I - but then I do know where I live, and I can identify the US!

If this is representative of the standard of education today, and I hate to say it but I suspect it might be, then why don't we ship some of our young offenders to far off climes - give them a holiday, but forget to give them the return ticket? With a bit of luck most of them wouldn't have a clue where they lived and would never be able to find their way back home - and that would be a problem solved! On the cheap, too!

Oh, alright then! A funny before I go. A relevant one. Humberside police - remember them, the worst in the country? - claim one of their speed cameras has clocked Martyn Styles, a man who lives in Kent, in his car doing 36mph within a 30mph zone in Hull. They say they have the evidence. However Martyn doesn't drive. He is both deaf and blind. Whoops!

In the police defence, Martyn does own a similar car that his wife Dawn drives, but only locally. She and their young son Chris are both deaf too, and at the time of the alleged offence happening 180 miles away they were all at the lad's school in Tunbridge Wells having lunch.

Oh, dear! Is this going to be another unsolved one for Humberside? There goes next year!

See you next week . . .

"The Bitch!" 28/10/06.

Submitted by:

Michael Knell

Michael Knell - "The Bitch!", a weekly UK News Review column, is hosted by the author and columnist Michael Knell. These articles appear on the Blackpool Gay Directory website, but are not specifically gay in content. More information on the author: http://www.michaelknell.com and on the directory: http://www.astabgay.com.



Copyright © 1995 - Photius Coutsoukis (All Rights Reserved).


Arts and Crafts
Auto and Trucks
Business and Finance
Cancer Survival
Computers and Internet
Computers and Technology
Education #2
Food and Drink
Food and Drink B
Gadgets and Gizmos
Home Improvement
Home Management
Kids and Teens
Learning Languages
Legal B
Marketing B
Medical Business
Medicines and Remedies
Music and Movies
Online Business
Parenting B
Pets and Animals
Politics and Government
Real Estate
Recreation and Sports
Self Help
Self Improvement
Short Stories
Site Promotion
Travel and Leisure
Travel Part B
Web Development
Wellness, Fitness and Diet
World Affairs
Writing B