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Greenwich Independent Advisory Group Needs New Members

Greenwich – Independent Advisory Group

Terms of Reference

Introduction

Independent Advisory groups (IAGs) were introduced following the McPherson Inquiry into the death of Stephen Lawrence.  They were created to help build a ‘genuine partnership’ between the police and all sections of the community.

The Greenwich IAG is a group of people from local communities in Greenwich who provide independent advice to the police on a range of issues.  Anyone interested in policing and its impact upon their community can apply to join the Greenwich IAG.  No formal qualifications are required.  IAG members are valued volunteers to ensure independent advice.

Strategic Role Statement

The role of Greenwich IAG is to help Greenwich MPS to build insight into the needs, wants and assets of the groups who are under-represented in Greenwich MPS normal decision making processes.  The Greenwich MPS use this insight to shape their service for the benefit of all our communities and engender trust and confidence.

1. Purpose

To help Greenwich MPS build insight into the needs, wants and expectations of groups and communities in Greenwich to shape delivery of service for the benefit of all groups and communities, and engender trust and confidence.

2. Scope

Provision of independent involvement and advice is the process by which people independent of Greenwich MPS observe, monitor, mentor or advise on aspects of policing, both in terms of the functions and policies of the service and the way in which Greenwich MPS interact with the broader community.  IAG members do not have an audit or formal scrutiny role as this function is undertaken by other bodies but will review aspects of police activity to consider the appropriateness of actions and outcomes.  The police are not ‘answerable’ to the IAG.  IAG members do not, and will not be asked to:

• Act as mediators or advocates with interaction with victims, families or witnesses.• Trace witnesses or act as intermediaries between victims of crime and investigation teams.• Participate in cases where they know the victim(s), suspect(s) or witness(es) of a crime.• Self-task.

3. Authority

The IAG is not a decision-making group for Greenwich Police.

4. Role

IAG members are ‘critical friends’ to the Police and provide informed information to communities to support and reinforce Police communications strategy.  Their advice helps to develop and improve plans and policies which will shape the way the community is served, with the intent to improving the quality of policing services, building trust and confidence, and providing reassurance to the community.

5. Membership

IAG membership is open to individuals who reside or work in Greenwich and who wish to serve the community by providing independent supportive advice to Greenwich MPS and an informed point of contact for their community.

6. Code of Conduct

IAG members shall have regard to the seven principles of public life (the ‘Nolan’ principles.)  IAG members shall discharge their duty with integrity, fairness, politeness, tolerance, courtesy, respect, openness and truthfulness and without fear or favour.

IAG members shall have regard to the following principles – selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.

Selflessness:  Holders of public office should act solely in terms of the public interest.

Integrity: Holders of public office must avoid placing themselves under any obligation to people or organisations that might try inappropriately to influence them in their work.  They should not act or take decisions to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves, their family or their friends.  They must declare and resolve any interests and relationships.  

Objectivity: Holders of public office must act and take decision impartially, fairly and on merit, using the best evidence and without discrimination or bias.

Accountability:  Holders of public office are accountable to the public for their decisions and actions and must submit themselves to the scrutiny necessary to ensure this.

Openness:  Holders of public office should act and take decisions in an open and transparent manner.  Information should not be withheld from the public unless there are clear and lawful reasons for so doing.

Honesty:  Holders of public office should be truthful.

Leadership:  Holders of public office should exhibit these principles in their own behaviour.  They should actively promote and robustly support the principles and be willing to challenge poor behaviour wherever it occurs.

7. IAG Members’ Role

IAG members act as ‘critical friends’ who provide independent, supportive challenge to Greenwich MPS and who provide informed information back to their community on key Police matters.  IAG members are volunteers who aspire to represent themselves and their community, and who are not linked to the judiciary, or employed or substantially connected to the ‘police family.’

IAG members will, ideally have broad expertise and experience and links with diverse communities, so that they can articulate a wide range of viewpoints.  Individually and as a group, the IAG.

• Works constructively, both individually and as a team member, to monitor, mentor and advise the Local Policing Lead on community police matters.• Listens to, reflects and advocates the diverse experiences of communities.• Provides informed information back to their communities on key Police matters to support and reinforce Police communications strategy.• Provides advice and guidance to the police to help prevent critical incidents escalating. • Provides a sounding board for the police to understand the potential impact on communities of police policies, practices and operations.• Reviews selected ‘Stop & Search’ records and Professional Standards files on complaints against the police, to consider the appropriateness of policies, actions and resolutions.• Asks probing and thought-provoking questions on behalf of communities in order to be able to provide informed and insightful advice to those communities.

Where appropriate and necessary the police may seek an IAG advisor to:

• Provide constructive assessment and advice on police actions and policies from the perspective of a receiver of police services and a member of the community.• Act as a confidential sounding board and advisor in respect of the police response to any critical incident through active participation in one or more Groups as required.

8. IAG Members – Main Duties

• Attend regular meetings of the IAG and any sub-Groups to which they are appointed. • Actively participate in professional conversation in the IAG, including proactively bringing issues of concern to meetings, questioning and challenging both ways where appropriate, to provide independent assurance.• Confidently articulate the views of communities in their area.• Participate with the IAG in assessing and prioritising the work it undertakes.• Effectively and consistently contribute to the development of effective, consistent and constructive advice.• Provide advice on specific issues which could include (but will not be limited to):

• Critical incidents (murder, serious assault, repeat victimisation, domestic violence etc.)• Improving trust and confidence of the community in Greenwich MPS.• Contributing to the development of policy and production of written reports.• Undertaking and contributing to research.• Keeping up to date with the concerns of the wider communities relating to the police.• Keeping up to date with external contexts (for examplepolitical changes) that may affect the work of the IAG.

9. Membership Criteria

• No serious convictions or serious allegations for criminal offences.  A criminal record will not necessarily be a bar to selection but may restrict involvement in sensitive matters.• Willing to undergo security checks as per Force policy.• Willing to be subject to the Official Secrets Act.• Willing to serve a minimum of four years.• Willing and able to devote time and personal commitment.• Willing to engage to further the interests of the community.• Agreeable to involvement to be made known to the wider public.• Committed to eliminating all forms of discriminatory practice.

10. IAG Membership Criteria

• Membership is open to individuals who reside or work, either permanently or temporarily, in Greenwich.  Gold Group members must be prepared to undergo vetting.• A desire to serve the community by providing independent, supportive advice to Greenwich Police is the key requirement – no qualifications are needed.• IAG members decide on appointment to the group, in consultation with Greenwich MPS and will be open to public scrutiny.  Gold Group appointment will be conditional on vetting.• IAG Gold Group members will, as far as is possible, be representative of Greenwich diverse communities.• IAG Gold Group members are expected to commit to serve a minimum of four years.

11. IAG Members’ Contact

The Co-ordinator will retain and maintain full contact details of all Greenwich IAG members.  Routine contact with members will be conducted through the Co-ordinator and/or the Chair.

12. Greenwich – IAG Meetings

      The Greenwich IAG will meet quarterly unless deemed more frequent or/as necessary.


ANYONE INTERESTED PLEASE LET US KNOW AND WE WILL PASS YOUR DETAILS


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