The Sunday Post (Dundee)

Very low profile for police watchdog


THE vast majority of the public have no idea what Scotland’s police watchdog does, an opinion poll has found.

The Scottish Police Authority (SPA) commission­ed the research at a time when it faced criticism it was not doing enough to hold the new single force to account.

Just over 1000 Scots were asked what they knew of the SPA.

A total of 53% said “not very much”, 16% said “nothing at all”, 28% said “a fair amount” and only 2% said “a great deal”.

Of those who said they knew at least “not very much”, a total of 50% said they thought the SPA was responsibl­e for general policing, 24% said it was in place monitor the force’s performanc­e and only 8% said the SPA’s job was to “ensure the police service is held accountabl­e”.

The private Ipsos Mori poll was undertaken last August and obtained by The Sunday Post under Freedom of Informatio­n laws.

In its response, the watchdog said: “It was clear from the results that there was some work to do to better inform, explain and connect the role of SPA to key areas of responsibi­lity like accountabi­lity and monitoring police performanc­e.

“This informatio­n has shaped the objectives of our ongoing business plan. It also provided useful feedback to contribute to the chairman’s governance review.”

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