THE POLICE and crime commissioner for Humberside has been asked to appear before Hull councillors after the area’s police force was judged “inadequate”.
The city’s Liberal Democrat councillors have asked Matthew Grove to appear at full meeting of Hull City Council later this month to explain the force’s poor performamce.
Humberside Police was the only one of the 43 forces in England and Wales to be given the lowest possible rating for its efficiency by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary in a report last month.
Hull’s Lib Dem Group leader, coun Mike Ross, said: “The police commissioner has a lot of questions to answer.
“I have spoken to many residents who have noticed a real decline in the service since the changes were made earlier this year.
“Hull deserves an effective police force and people want to feel safe on the street.
“We have asked the police commissioner to attend the next meeting of council.
“We want answers about why there are not enough frontline police in Hull.”
The “inadequate” judgment passed on Humberside was the first of its kind since the watchdog reformed the way it inspects forces two years ago.
Inspectors said the force had a limited understanding of current and future demand for its services which affected “its ability to provide a good service to the public”.
The force recently underwent a major restructure designed to save £31 million by 2019.
At the time the report was published, Mr Grove described it as a “snapshot in time” and did not reflect the significant work that had been done in the intervening months since the inspection was carried out.
Mr Grove said: “I have never turned down any request to appear at council meetings and will be happy to attend Hull City Council should they invite me, which at the moment they have not. The correct way for local elected representatives to hold me to account is through the Humberside Police and Crime Panel, which met last week to discuss the HMIC report with me. The Hull LibDem representative on the panel raised no such concerns, which makes this announcement all the more surprising.
“This is probably the worst example of political opportunism I have seen in my time as Police and Crime Commissioner. Councillor Ross appears to be more interested in playing to the media than dealing with the very serious and real issue of protecting the public, when all he had to do was have the courtesy to pick up the phone and call me to discuss his concerns.
“I am extremely grateful for the support I receive from members of all political parties locally in what is a very challenging role and I will always attend parish, town and city council meetings by request, as I do every week.”