GREATER MANCHESTER POLICE, CRIME AND FIRE PANEL IS RECRUITING

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GREATER MANCHESTER POLICE, CRIME AND FIRE PANEL

INDEPENDENT MEMBER RECRUITMENT PACK :

If you could take on a key role tackling local policing, crime, fire and rescue, and community safety issues, to make a real difference to communities in Greater Manchester, you may be the right person to serve as an independent member on the Greater Manchester Police, Crime and Fire Panel.

Contents

  1. What is a Police, Crime and Fire Panel?
  2. What do Police, Crime and Fire Panels do?
  3. How do Police, Crime and Fire Panels work?
  4. What is an independent member?
  5. Why be an independent member?
  6. What will I be expected to do?
  7. Are there any rules about conduct or standards?
  8. How much time is involved?
  9. Will I receive any payment?
  10. How long will I be a member?
  11. What qualities do I need?
  12. Who can be an independent member?
  13. How do I apply?
  14. What happens next?
  15. How can I find out more?
  16. Can I get any feedback on my application?
  1. What is a Police, Crime and Fire?

Police, Fire and Crime Panels (Panels) are an integral part of the local policing governance landscape and, where applicable, the fire governance landscape in England and Wales.

The role and functions of Panels are defined by the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 (the 2011 Act), in particular, sections 28 to 30 and Schedules 1, 5, 6, 7 and 8. In each police force area, they play a vital role in scrutinising the actions and decisions of the relevant Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (PFCC), or Combined Authority Mayor with PCC functions. In Greater Manchester the PCC’s functions are part of the Greater Manchester Mayor’s portfolio. The Mayor has delegated these functions to the Greater Manchester Deputy Mayor for Policing, Crime and Fire (except those which they are required by law to exercise personally).

Panels provide a crucial element of transparency to the public, hosting meetings publicly, whilst ensuring that appropriate information is available to enable the local electorate to hold their PCC or PFCC to account.

All 41 Panels across England and Wales, who have either a PCC, PFCC or a Combined Authority Mayor with PCC functions, are required to have a minimum of two independent members who sit alongside elected local authority members. Independent members bring a unique set of expertise, ensuring that the necessary skills and knowledge are available for a Panel to discharge its scrutiny function effectively.

  1. What do Police, Crime and Fire Panels do?

The statutory responsibilities of the Panel are to:

  • Review the draft Police and Crime Plan, Fire and Rescue Plan and Fire and Rescue Statement or variations and make reports or recommendations to the Mayor/Deputy Mayor.
  • Review the Deputy Mayor’s Annual Report and make reports or recommendations to the Deputy Mayor.
  • Review and scrutinise decisions made, or actions taken, by the Mayor/Deputy Mayor, and make reports or recommendations in respect of them.
  • Review the police and crime component of the Greater Manchester Mayor’s precept.
  • Review the Greater Manchester Mayor’s proposed appointment of the Chief Constable, Chief Fire Office and Deputy Mayor for Policing, Crime and Fire.

In Greater Manchester, the Panel takes a strong role in supporting the Mayor/Deputy Mayor to determine strategic priorities, and to ensure that future plans reflect and support local and partner priorities.

  • How do Police, Crime and Fire Panels work?

The Panel meets six times a year to carry out their main responsibilities and scutinise the Mayor/Deputy Mayor about all aspects of their activities. Members of the public are able to attend these meetings and they are also live streamed.

In addition, the Panel operates a Steering Group, which looks in detail at particular issues, and this also meets six times a year. Independent members will be invited to become a member of the Steering Group too.

  • Who sits on the Police, Crime and Fire Panel?

The Panel currently has 17 members (ten elected, five co-opted political members and two independent).

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Independent members will be treated equally to the elected members on the Panel and therefore have the same responsibilities and duties, including full voting rights, and access to the same level of support and information.

  • Why be an independent member of the Police, Crime and Fire Panel?

As an independent member of the Panel, you will play a key role in providing transparency and accountability for the public on the activities of the Mayor/Deputy Mayor. It is an important and challenging role which offers you the chance to review the key strategic actions and decisions taken by the Mayor/Deputy Mayor.

This will include scrutinising whether the Mayor/Deputy has achieved the objectives set out in their Police and Crime Plan, Fire and Rescue Plan and Fire and Rescue Statement, and considered the priorities of community safety partners, and consulted appropriately with the public.

Independent members have full voting rights and are encouraged to get involved in all areas of the panel’s work.

Further details of the roles and responsibilities of independent members can be found in the role description.

  • What will I be expected to do?

You will be expected to attend and participate in all meetings of the Panel and any of its sub-committees that you may be assigned to.

As a guide it is anticipated that the total time commitment required from independent members will be around one day a month (around 12-14 days per year).

Further details of the roles and responsibilities of independent members can be found in the role description.

  • Are there any rules about conduct or standards?

At all times, Panel members must maintain the highest standards of conduct and ethics. You will be expected to abide by the same rules as local councillors. For example, when you become a Panel member you must not:

  • Use your position improperly to advantage yourself, your own organisation or community.
  • You must not disclose confidential information.
  • If appointed, you will also be required to give details of any pecuniary interests and such other interests required by the Code of Conduct for Members.  These will be listed in a register which is open to the public.
  • These rules are set out in Rules of Procedure which are agreed by the Panel themselves at the first meeting of every municipal year. These will be consistent with the standards for local councillors. If you are found to be in breach of the rules, you may be suspended or removed from the Panel.
  • How much time is involved?

The typical commitment required from a Panel member is expected to average one day a month, including preparation time.

All Panel members will receive introductory information and other appropriate training to support them in their role.

  • Will I receive any payment?

Independent members of the Panel will receive an annual allowance of £930. You will also be able to claim for the costs of travel and other expenses involved in carrying out Panel work.

  • How long will I be a member?

Initially, independent members will be appointed for a term of three years. Legislation states that independent members are able to serve on the Panel for a maximum of two terms.

  1. What qualities do I need?

We are looking for local people from different sectors who can bring a range of skills and expertise to be an effective independent member. Coming from a policing or fire background is not a requirement for being an independent member on a Panel. Understanding what matters to local people is important to the role.

The knowledge, skills and experience required can be found in the role description.

  1. Who can be an independent member?

You must be at least 18 years old.

There are some rules about who cannot be an independent member of the Panel, specifically:

  • Mayor/Deputy Mayor/PCC/PFCC for force area.
  • a Member/Leader/City Mayor of the GM Combined Authority/10 Local Authorities for the area or substitute Members acting in their place.
  • a member of a local council in the local force area.
  • a member of staff of the PCC for the local force area.
  • a member of staff of the fire and rescue authority (for Police, Fire and Crime Panels, where appropriate).
  • a police officer/member of the civilian staff of the local force area.
  • a Member of Parliament.
  • a Member of the National Assembly for Wales.
  • a Member of the Scottish Parliament.
  • a Member of the European Parliament.
  1. How do I apply?

On the application form you will need to explain why you wish to become an independent member and what skills and experience you would bring to the Panel

  1. What happens next?

The Police, Crime and Fire Panel has appointed a selection panel to consider all applications. Its job will be to shortlist, interview and agree candidates to recommend to the Police, Crime and Fire Panel.

Shortlisting will take place on Friday 9th August 2024 and interviews will take place, week commencing 19th August 2024. Formal appointments will be made by the end of September once the Police, Crime and Fire Panel has considered the recommendations of the selection panel.

Successful candidates will be invited to join the Police, Crime and Fire Panel from the first available meeting after that date.

  1. How can I find out more?

If you have any questions about this role, please use the contact gmcapeople@greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk

  1. Can I get any feedback on my application?

The selection panel will offer feedback to any applicant who is shortlisted for interview but unsuccessful in the appointment.

Other useful information:

You can find out more information on the following websites:

Greater Manchester Combined Authority web pages – for more information on the work of the Greater Manchester Police, Crime and Fire Panel, including previous meeting papers:

Police and Fire – Greater Manchester Combined Authority (greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk)

Greater Manchester Combined Authority (greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk)

Home Office web pages – for more information about role of Police and Crime Commissioners, and Police, Crime and Fire Panels:

Police and crime commissioners – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

LGA web pages for more information about the role of Police and Crime Commissioners, and Police, Crime and Fire Panels:

Police and crime panels | Local Government Association

Greater Manchester’s Fire Plan

Fire Plan – Greater Manchester Combined Authority (greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk)

Fire Plan – Greater Manchester Fire Rescue Service