We are providing all the candidates seeking election as West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) with the opportunity to tell our readers what their priorities are, and to tell us a little more about themselves.
We’ve asked the same four questions to each candidate, for straightforward comparison, and we have invited candidates to supply social media and website links if they choose to.
- Click here to read other West Mercia PCC candidate interviews
- Click here to read other articles about the Liberal Democrats
- Click here to read other articles about the PCC elections 2021
(1) Please tell us a little about yourself.
I have lived in Worcestershire with my husband for over 30 years and we have three grown up children.
Until recently I worked as a senior manager in the NHS having previously managed learning centres in higher education.
I have served as a councillor on Wychavon District Council for 26 years, and as leader of the opposition since 1999.
I have been a board member of a Housing Association and I am currently a school governor and a trustee of two local charities.
In my spare time I enjoy gardening and walking our local footpaths.
(2) What do you feel are the policing priorities in our area?
Our recent survey on facebook showed that getting more police on the streets was top priority, closely followed by tackling anti social behaviour, with cutting burglaries, knife crime and speeding all being mentioned by over 20%.
From emails I’ve received, there are also concerns that West Mercia police are not taking rural crimes seriously, so much so that 1 in 4 people in rural areas are not reporting crime they were a victim of.
Domestic violence has increased during lockdown.
I would also make it a priority to take action against illegal drugs, in particular the County Lines network which puts young people at risk, are also current priorities.
(3) What initiatives would you seek to implement if elected on 6th May?
Liberal Democrats are calling for a return to proper community policing, where officers are visible, trusted and known to local people.
This is important both for the prevention and detection of crime but it must be followed by effective enforcement, which also has implications for the criminal justice system.
The force needs to act more promptly to investigate crimes, and work more closely with partners in protecting vulnerable people.
There also needs to be better communication with local people, both with consultation on the Force’s plans and more fundamentally on day to day incident reporting and feedback.
(4) What skills/experience would you look to bring to the role?
I have gained a wealth of experience of managing services in the public sector both through employment and through my longstanding roles as a district and parish councillior and I have gained a reputation for getting things done.
For example, following local concern about road safety and speeding, I set up a local Speed Watch Group as part of the scheme run by West Mercia Police.