Written evidence submitted by Anthony Stansfeld, Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley (COR0027)
- As reported by the National Police Chief’s Council across the media, the current Coronavirus situation has led to a significant reduction of recorded crime across the country; a picture which is mirrored in the Thames Valley region. Whilst the level of domestic incidents has seen an apparent reduction across my own force since the 23rd March 2020, I am extremely mindful that this artificial picture is masked by the unprecedented situation we find ourselves in. For that reason, it would be premature - at this stage at least - to comment any further on domestic abuse risk, or abuse within the home, until my own force have had the opportunity to undertake more rigorous analysis and report this to me. However, both my Deputy PCC and I are regularly briefed on a range of Covid19 operational performance issues by my Chief Constable and his senior teams. Furthermore, I am reassured that performance systems have been enhanced by my force since the Coronavirus outbreak, and that my own office has been given full access to this information.
- Both the Chief Constable and I are clear in our message; that anyone who is a victim of abuse can report through 999 if they are in immediate danger (or if unable to talk press 55 and the force will respond). During these difficult times, my own office (OPCC) has risen to the challenge in their unfailing efforts to support victims through our dedicated Victims First Hub. I will monitor developments closely to ensure we continue to provide a good service to victims of crime, including abuse, across the Thames Valley.