THE following are personal election statements and key information from the candidates who are contesting the police and crime commissioner elections on November 15.
Patience Tayo Awe - independent
Dear Constituents, I am Patience Tayo Awe, vying for position of Independent Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley.
Thank you for the opportunity to share my aspiration to represent you impartially. I must commend you, the police, statutory agencies, voluntary and community safety partnerships etc for your commitment and perseverance to date.
This non-partisan Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) initiative by the government could be the most significant democratic reform of policing in our lifetime. Without proper checks and balances our policing could leave a legacy of resentment and frustration leading to public riot like we experienced last year.
PCC role is non-partisan. That is why I am standing as an independent candidate. I am not affiliated to any political party; completely independent of the Police, not a former bureaucrat from the Police Authority. Thus, I will be able to represent you impartially without being hindered by conflicting political party policies or influence. Party politics should be kept out of policing to maintain the integrity of the police service and truly empower local people.
My role if elected is to ensure that the police provide an efficient and effective service to the people of Thames Valley. I will also have wider responsibilities regarding community safety and criminal justice in Thames Valley. I will involve the public in setting local policing priorities. I will be a viable link between the public and the police. I will give victims a voice with the hope of transforming painful memories into powerful motivators and sources of strength. I will ensure the policing needs of the people are met and work in collaboration with Community Safety Partnerships and statutory agencies.
I have broad, relevant, transferable skills and experience, having worked in various roles also as Project Manager. I have Masters in IT and PRINCE2 qualifications. ICT is crucial in fighting against crime and ensuring we live in a safer community.
I am passionate about people, volunteering and serving the community. I have served as Reading Voluntary Action (RVA) Trustee, a charity that supports Reading’s voluntary and community sector also provides advisory services and training. I am a member of the Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust. I am also interested in criminal justice issues. I am a member of the Reading Criminal Justice Association and just joined the Women’s Institute.
In addition to the above-mentioned, my aptitude for learning and quick adaptability, my desire to succeed, I would also bring analytical skills and patience necessary to get the job done. Please find attached my flyer for your attention.
Thank you in anticipation of your cooperation and vote.
Barry Cooper – UKIP
Who I am - I am a resident of Waddesdon in Buckinghamshire, where I live with my wife Elizabeth and daughters Isabelle (5) and Emily (2). I was born in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) in 1977, but have lived in the UK for over half my life. I have recently attained an MA degree in history via distance learning and am a keen student of history and politics. Professionally, I work in a family owned retail business with branches in London. Being as it is a family affair, I wear several “hats” including marketing, PR, product development, customer services and direct sales.
I see the fact that I have no direct professional connections with the legal or law enforcement spheres as an enormous advantage – I am free of any pre-conceptions, expectations and “baggage” that would inhibit my ability to implement truly democratically-based and impartial policing strategy.
What I will do as PCC – This role has to be based on the priorities, preferences and concerns that the residents of the Thames Valley communicate to the PCC. Ignoring or neglecting the democratic aspect of the role defeats its entire purpose. My Police and Crime Plan will be a “living document” that reflects the concerns of everyone in the Thames Valley and will be “refreshed” regularly, at least once a year.
Initially my focus will be on addressing anti-social behaviour through direct police involvement and working with partnership agencies. I will also act on additional priorities that people have already communicated – more “bobbies on the beat”, better detection rates, faster response times and clearer communication between the TVP and victims of crime.
I will work to improve the morale of the TVP, cutting extraneous paperwork and bureaucracy and ending target/quota driven policing, which is a disproportionate drain on scarce resources and causes resentment in both the police and the public.
The police are a PCC’s constituents too and must not be neglected. I will make sure that all cuts are imposed in the most sensible and rational way to avoid negatively affecting the front line, visible policing that people want. I am staunchly against privatisation of any fundamentally police function and will resist it at every turn, including not renewing current arrangements when they expire.
Why vote for me – UKIP is a democratic, libertarian party which holds democracy, accessibility and accountability at the heart of its ethos. Unlike the old parties, we are not burdened with decades of ideology and policy that we are obligated, or inclined, to defend.
I believe that I can provide the impartial, democratically-minded PCC that the Thames Valley needs and deserves. My team is strong and experienced; we have fresh-ideas, common-sense and the ambition to make the Thames Valley the safest and best policed region in the county. Vote Barry Cooper and UKIP on November 15th.
Geoff Howard - independent
- Honours Degree in Education and a former Head of Department in a Slough secondary school.
- Own Estate & Lettings Agency in Slough for 27 years – Former Chairman of the business organisation Windsor & Slough Property News Association.
- A serving Magistrate for 20 years, Chairing Adult and Youth Benches in Berkshire. I also sit on appeals in the Crown Court.
- A former Slough Borough Councillor for 13 years. Chair of the Scrutiny Committee and Cabinet Member for Resources for 4 years, responsible for the Council budget of £100million.
Lead Councillor when the Council successfully sued the former Labour Government for a £1million refund of business rates.
Lead Councillor when the Council mounted a campaign against the former Labour Government for greater funding due to inaccurate population estimates. I attended a number of meetings at Parliament with various Labour Ministers over a 4-year period in relation to this campaign.
For many years I attended monthly meetings of Neighbourhood Forums in the area I represented.
v Former Chair of Governors and former Governor of primary schools in Slough. A serving Governor of a secondary school in Slough.
v A serving Chairman of a local Youth Club/Boxing Club for many years.
v Former Captain of Slough Rugby Club and now a Vice-Chairman.
v Former Chairman of Eton Wick Hellenic League Football Club.
v A serving member of a local Rotary club for over 20 years and Chair of the Community Committee. Have helped raise hundreds of thousands of pounds in charitable monies for cancer charities and local charities.
MY AIMS IN THIS ROLE 1. To be THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE and to represent the best interests of the people in the community at all times. This will be achieved by holding regular meetings with community groups and local authorities.
2. To determine LOCAL POLICING PRIOROITIES as a result of these meetings and to tackle crime at all levels.
3. To MANAGE THE EFFICIENCY SAVINGS demanded by the Government in a manner that will not be detrimental to the interests of the community, e.g. no reduction in the number of ‘bobbies on the beat’.
4. To set out A 5-YEAR POLICE and CRIME PLAN and publish annual progress reports.
5. To be accountable at all times to the public.
November 15th GEOFF HOWARD x Printed by instantprint.co.uk, 4 Ignite, Magna Way, Templeborough, Rotherham, S60 1FD. Published by Geoff Howard, 403 Bath Road, Cippenham, Slough, Berkshire, SL1 5QL
John Orrell Howson- Liberal Democrat
As Police & Crime Commissioner I would: Emphasise improved detection rates – For years Thames Valley did not solve enough crimes; Ensure support for victims of crime is funded and not cut; Protect frontline policing including bobbies on the beat; Work with other agencies to ensure cases are progressed to court as quickly as possible; Consult the public, community groups and elected representatives including town and parish councils about local policing priorities; Listen to young people who cannot vote, but need a say about both crime and policing issues; Ensure value for money – but protect services to the public.
Thames Valley is a very large police area, the largest non-urban police force in England. It ranges from sparsely populated rural areas in the Chilterns, Cotswolds and Berkshire Downs to urban centres such as Slough, Reading, Newbury, Oxford, Banbury, Bicester, Aylesbury, High Wycombe, Milton Keynes and many other towns and villages.
My key tasks as Police & Crime Commissioner: •Reduce crime and the fear of crime; •Improve police accountability, visibility, and work to raise public confidence in the police; •Target resources on detecting crime and cutting offending rates My background •22 years a Magistrate in Oxfordshire •Financial experience in the public, voluntary and private sectors, including running my own company.
•National experience of criminal justice system. Led demands to stop police using out of court disposals that prevented cases coming to court and, as a result, victims not receiving compensation.
•Expert on licensing law, and effects of the night time economy.
•Been a victim of crime, including a stabbing and several burglaries.
This form has been prepared by Chris Williams election agent for John Howson of 10 Rhuddlan Close, Shenley Church End, Milton Keynes, MK5 6EL.
Contact details www.johnhowson.com
Anthony Stansfeld - Conservative
Anthony Stansfeld has been nominated as the Conservative candidate for the Thames Valley Police Commissioner. He was born in Newbury and W Berks has been his home all his life. He is currently an executive member of West Berks Council, and, until this month, has been a member of the Thames Valley Police Authority. He took over as Chairman of the Performance Committee of the Thames Valley Police last year, during this period the overall crime rate has dropped by 15%, the greatest drop of any Police Force in England and Wales. He has, in conjunction with his Committee, set the exacting targets the Police have to achieve over the next few months. He concentrated his efforts on reducing rural crime, and improving household burglary detection rates, especially in Slough and Reading, neither of which has been up to standard in the past. He is also Vice Chair of the Audit, Governance and Risk Committee which sets the financial targets for the Police.
Anthony has had a career in both the military and in industry. He enlisted in the Army at 17. He joined the Royal Green Jackets and saw active service in Borneo and N Ireland. He learnt to fly helicopters at Middle Wallop and commanded various Army Air Corps Squadrons, including the Army helicopters in the Falkland Islands in the latter half of 1982. He spent 2 years as Chief of Staff Intelligence in the Far East. On leaving the Army he became Marketing and then for 6 years Managing Director of the aircraft company Pilatus Britten Norman, which had aircraft in over 100 countries. At the same time he commanded the Army reserve helicopters as a TA officer. All three UK Armed services use the aircraft he produced, and the Defender 4000, which he brought into service, is the last fully certified aircraft produced in the UK.
While in the Army he spent 4 months carrying out the reconnaissance for the crossing of the Darien Gap in Panama and Columbia, and led the first stage of Operation Raleigh, taking young people through the jungles of Honduras and Belize. For 8 of years he was a trustee of the Thames Valley Air Ambulance. He has an MSc and studied international terrorism and Global security at Master Degree level.
He has the breadth of experience to be Police Commissioner in the largest non metropolitan Police Authority in the country in a time of rapid change and increased threat from international terrorism. The Thames Valley Police has over 8000 police and staff and an annual budget approaching £400m. He has the leadership and financial awareness to oversee this large organisation. He has already demonstrated his ability to get a grip of detection rates for household burglary in our major towns and cities, and to tackle rural crime. He has a particular interest in safeguarding vulnerable people and reducing anti- social behaviour.
Tim Starkey - Labour
What are the new Police and Crime Commissioners?
This new role, is to be elected on 15th NOVEMBER. YOU HAVE 2 VOTES: 1ST AND 2ND CHOICE Each Police area will have a Police and Crime Commissioner, including Thames Valley (covering Bucks, Milton Keynes, Oxfordshire and Berkshire). Police Commissioners will be responsible for strategic decisions eg. police numbers and how much council tax you pay towards policing. Operational decisions, eg. who to arrest or investigate, will stay firmly in the control of police officers.
Why Tim Starkey?
For over 11 years Tim has worked with people in the frontline of the criminal justice system: both as a prosecutor and a defence lawyer; in police stations, courts and prisons and, above all, in bringing perpetrators of human trafficking to justice. He understands the system, and its failings, and wants to make it work better.
Previously a Liberal Democrat, Tim joined Labour after u-turns on tuition fees and police numbers.
Tim’s Key Priorities · Fighting the 20% cuts that put at risk public safety.
· Stop the privatisation of key police functions, outsourcing patrolling the streets to firms like G4S is not the answer!
· Create a more efficient service: less paper and fewer layers of management.
· Better communication: developing a website which victims can log into securely to track the progress of their cases at a time convenient to them.
· Investing in Individual Domestic Violence Advisors to support people fleeing domestic abuse.
· Working in partnership with Thames Valley’s flourishing IT industry to combat internet fraud and keep our children safe online and free from cyber bullying.
· Work with mentoring charities to provide young people with positive alternatives to anti-social behaviour and gangs.
· Protect the operational independence of the police. Decisions over police numbers and priorities will be for the PCC, decisions over who is investigated and arrested must always be for police officers.
If you have any questions, get in touch on Timstarkeylabour@gmail.com www.TimStarkey.com