Government inspectors say they have “serious concerns” about the running of North Yorkshire Police.
The force has been graded in eight areas by His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) following an inspection in October last year.
Of these only one was ‘good’ which was treatment of the public, and two were ‘adequate’ — preventing crime and managing offenders.
Four areas were found to ‘require improvement’ which were responding to the public, investigating crime, protecting vulnerable people and developing a positive workplace.
The force was deemed to be ‘inadequate’ — the lowest of the ratings — for strategic planning, organisational management and value for money.
In his summary, Roy Wilsher, HM inspector of constabulary. said: “I have concerns about the performance of North Yorkshire Police in keeping people safe and reducing crime.
“In particular, I have serious concerns about its strategic planning and organisational management.
“These are the findings I consider most important from our assessments of the force over the last year.
“Senior leaders in the force haven’t had enough oversight of their enabling services, such as HR and IT, or of the impact that failures in these areas have had on policing services.
“Structures that control the support functions aren’t effective. At the time of our inspection, the force was working to improve its performance management plans, but significant challenges in its enabling services were hampering service delivery.”
He added that the lack of an effective workforce plan was “creating workforce pressures”.
“A lack of trained staff and a high number of vacancies are also hampering the service the force provides,” he said.
Commenting on the report Lisa Winward, Chief Constable, said: “The publication of the HMICFRS PEEL inspection report shares the findings of an independent and detailed audit of the force and I value and welcome the scrutiny of the inspectors and thank them for their work.
“The report highlights a number of areas that the force delivers well but also reports on a significant number of areas that require improvement.”
She added: “We are implementing an effective improvement plan that I believe will significantly improve our performance across the whole range of HMICFRS metrics and will deliver an improved service to our communities.
“As the safest place in the country, I can assure the communities of North Yorkshire and the City of York that we remain absolutely committed to keeping you safe, and feeling safe.”
Police Commissioner Zoe Metcalfe said she was “more than disappointed” with some of the findings in the report.
“It’s unacceptable that North Yorkshire Police requires improvement in multiple areas, in particular its strategic planning, organisational management and value for money – clearly more needs to be done and is being done as I continue to hold the Chief Constable to account.
“Our Police Force needs to do significantly better. “