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National pilot project beckons for dedicated custody watchdogs

Investing in Volunteers S

Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Paddy Tipping today praised the army of police volunteers helping to improve safety in Nottinghamshire as the country marked Volunteers Week.

The PCC said volunteers were a vital asset to the force and were helping Nottinghamshire stand out as a beacon of innovation nationally.

His comments came as Nottinghamshire’s Independent Custody Visiting Scheme (ICV) – the service delivered by volunteers who check on the welfare of detainees in police custody – prepares to embark on a new national pilot project.

“Millions of volunteers including Special Constables, Police Cadets, Police Volunteers and ICVs devote their time for the benefit of their communities and without them our streets would not be as safe as they are today,” said Mr Tipping.

“There have been countless occasions in Nottinghamshire where the actions of police volunteers have literally saved lives. These people play a vital part in the health, wellbeing and resilience of local people, sometimes at the expense of their own safety. Often, the only reward for their efforts is personal satisfaction.

“These people deserve our praise and gratitude every day of the year. I’m proud to support Volunteers Week and give credit where it is justly deserved.”

ICVs dedicate their own time to carry out unannounced visits to police custody facilities to ensure the rights’, entitlements and wellbeing of detainees are being protected. 

They report their findings to PCCs who have the responsibility of holding their force to account and requesting improvements in standards.

Nottinghamshire’s ICV scheme is taking part in a pilot managed by the Independent Custody Visiting Association (ICVA) in the autumn which will see custody visitors reviewing custody records in addition to performing spot checks on-site to produce more comprehensive evidence of the detainee experience.

The project, which was first developed and trialled in Derbyshire, will require the recruitment and training of an additional team of ICVs who will be specially appointed for the task.

Last month, Nottinghamshire’s ICV scheme was presented with a coveted Gold Quality Assurance Award from the ICVA during a glittering ceremony at the House of Lords in recognition of exceptionally high standards of scrutiny.

It has also received Investors in Volunteers accreditation which is the UK quality standard for good practice in volunteer management, recognising training and development opportunities offered. 

A new recruitment drive for ICVs will open in the coming weeks and anyone interested should email: kayt.radford@nottinghamshire.pnn.police.uk

Volunteers Week takes place between June 1-7 every year and celebrates volunteering across all sectors.



Media Enquiries:   Sallie Blair - 01283 821012 / 07702 541401



Posted on Monday 3rd June 2019
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