South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Dr Alan Billings, has been reselected by the Labour Party to contest May’s election.
He was unanimously approved by all the Constituency Labour Parties and affiliated organisations across South Yorkshire.
Dr Billings has been in the post since November 2014, when he won a by-election on the first round of voting.
Since then, he has overseen progress in beginning the task of rebuilding trust in the force. He has:
· Secured Home Office grants towards the Hillsborough Inquests costs from the Home Secretary
· Put extra staff into CSE work and ensured training was improved
· Set up a panel of victims, survivors and their families to advise him and the force on CSE work
· Commissioned Professor John Drew to review how CSE was dealt with across South Yorkshire – he will report in the next few weeks. Trials are taking place in Sheffield Crown Court
· Currently reviewing how South Yorkshire Police deals with protests
· Commissioned a review of how the public contact the police which is gradually leading to an improvement of service
Dr Alan Billings said:
“I’m very pleased to have been reselected by the Labour Party to contest the upcoming Police and Crime Commissioner election.
“Since taking up the post just over one year ago, I have worked hard to hold the Police Force to account on behalf of the public and to begin the task of rebuilding trust in the Force. Some good progress has been made, though there remains much more to do.
“It has been a challenging time. What has had to be faced and dealt with in South Yorkshire is unprecedented - the on-going Hillsborough Inquests, child sexual exploitation in Rotherham and continued protest marches by far-right groups. All of these have put a severe strain on the budget at a time when government funding has been severely cut.
“Looking forward, the biggest challenge will be to maintain neighbourhood policing with the far fewer officers and PCSOs that we now have. But I am committed to making this a priority.
“We also have to find better ways of working with partners - the local authorities, the NHS, Fire and Ambulance, the voluntary sector - if between us we are to meet the increasing demands on all of us from the growing number of vulnerable people in our society.
“I welcome the opportunity to ask the public of South Yorkshire to put their trust in me again and to use my experience, knowledge and work ethic to help deliver a police service we can have confidence in.”