“Engaging to ensure effective policing” LINCOLNSHIRE POLICE

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“Engaging to ensure effective policing” LINCOLNSHIRE POLICE Powered By Docstoc
					                                                     DRAFT

              LINCOLNSHIRE POLICE AUTHORITY PARTNERSHIP STRATEGY

                                               INTRODUCTION

1. Lincolnshire Police Authority has adopted the Audit Commission definition of a
partnership in that it is:

     ‘An agreement between two or more independent bodies to work collectively to
    achieve agreed objective(s)’

Partnerships are a response to the complex and multi-faceted problems that face society and
that cannot be tackled effectively by any individual body working alone. They can provide
flexibility, innovation and additional financial and human capital resources to help solve
problems. These are powerful incentives for organizations to work with others and now all
local public bodies work in partnerships to different degrees. The distinction between
statutory and voluntary partnerships has, in effect, become blurred.

                                                       AIM

2. To define the Authority’s engagement policy with partnerships and defining the means for
its achievement consistent with Lincolnshire Police Authority’s vision and strategic
objectives1.

                                               BACKGROUND

3. While it is clearly understood that local partnerships are essential to deliver
improvements in people’s quality of life and build our capacity to develop, it must also be
recognized that:

    •    They bring risks as well as opportunities, and governance can be problematic;

    •    They may not deliver good value for public money, so local public bodies should ask
         searching questions about those they are engaged in;

    •    Clear accountability is needed between partners to produce better accountability to
         the public, including redress when things go wrong;

    •    Partnerships and their members can have divided loyalties between the partnership
         and their parent organisation. Maintaining a cohesive and focussed partnership team
         can present a leadership challenge;

    •    Planning cycles and aspirations may not always be compatible; however, every effort
         should be made to synchronise them.


It is essential therefore that the Authority has a partnership strategy that is clear and assists
members in engaging effectively with partners. It is equally important that the Authority
regularly reviews and scrutinizes its partnership involvement to ensure that the work with its
partners adds value and is in line with the Authority’s strategic aims and objectives. Where
the Authority aligns with the aims and objectives of a partnership the Authority should decide



1
 The vision and strategic objectives of Lincolnshire Police Authority are contained in Section 1 of the current
policing plan; all members of the Authority hold a copy of this document.

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if there is a representative role for the Authority or a need to have oversight where the Force
is represented on a partnership.


                                               ASPIRATION

4. Partnerships are an important element in increasing our capacity to maintain continual
improvement and provide value for money, whilst ensuring an efficient and effective police
service in Lincolnshire. To achieve this it is recognised that we must:

          •    Identify the partnerships that have the potential to add value to our objectives and
               to build key strategic alliances;
          •    Influence decision making in order to meet agreed outcomes and to benefit the
               people of Lincolnshire;
          •    Establish lines of shared resources where applicable (e.g. inter-agency products
               such as standards and consultation tools);
          •    Play a full and active part in the appropriate partnerships;
          •    Add value to the effectiveness of those partnerships;
          •    Increase the influence of the Authority amongst key partners.

                                   ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

5. Lincolnshire Police Authority

          •    Identify which partnerships add value to the Authority’s objectives2;
          •    Ensure that we are appropriately represented;
          •    The Authority’s aims and objectives should be clearly defined for each partnership
               and the Authority’s representative(s) on that partnership should be accountable to
               the relevant committee for its achievement;
          •    Ensure that the partnership has clear terms of reference;
          •    Where a partnership is failing to deliver the desired outcomes, put in place a
               strategy to rectify the situation;
          •    Ensure that the appropriate governance arrangements are in place;
          •    Provide clear guidance to Authority representatives, defining the extent of their
               delegated authority and any other issues that might bear upon their decision
               making ability.

6. Community & Partnership Committee

          •    Monitor the Authority’s participation in partnerships and continually review the
               benefits of involvement;
          •    Ensure that the Authority’s involvement in partnerships provides benefit to all
               parties;
          •    Receive updates from members who represent the Authority on partnerships and
               distribute them to the appropriate committee where required;
          •    Report annually to the Full Authority on the effectiveness of partnerships,
               highlighting where involvement is ineffective; where such instances occur,
               investigate remedial action;
          •    Advise the Full Authority where we should seek involvement in other partnerships.




2
    A detailed list of partnerships ranging from local to national are at Annex A

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7. Representatives on Partnerships

The Authority will provide clear guidance to members allocated to partnerships or oversight
panels/groups – through the Engagement and Communication Officer – after approval by
relevant Authority committee. General guidance to members is contained at Annex B;
however, each partnership or oversight panel/group will have a specific role that will require
detailed and specific guidance for those appointed to represent the Authority. The specific
guidance will highlight the need for Authority members to:

          •   Ensure specific terms of reference for each partnership are in place;
          •   Contribute fully to the partnership’s activities, ensuring that the Authority’s
              objectives are met wherever possible;
          •   Ensure that the role and strategic objectives of the Authority are understood by
              the partnership and are complementary with those of the partnership;
          •   Manage the flow of information between the partnership and the Authority to
              enable informed decisions to be made;
          •   Provide regular feedback to the Authority on the development of strategic plans to
              inform the Authority planning process3;
          •   Provide input to the partnership’s planning process to ensure compatibility with
              those of the Authority.

8. Use of Resources and Performance

There is a need for a mechanism to periodically review the resources allocated to
partnerships, including significant in-kind contributions, and to assess the performance of the
partnership. This will allow the true cost of partnerships to be assessed and will assist in
providing a view on whether membership of the partnership is meeting the Authority’s
strategic objectives. Further guidance will be provided in this area.

9. Governance and Risk

Partnerships can provide significant benefits to the Authority but they also bring risks. It is
important that sound governance arrangements are in place to assist in mitigating risk. The
following matters need to be monitored:

          •   That risks for the Authority, and for the partnership, are assessed and agreed;
          •   Each partnership maintains a relevance to its agreed purpose over time;
          •   Partnerships are properly authorized and empowered, and their legal status, if
              any, is understood;
          •   The implications of terminating our involvement in each partnership are
              understood.




3
    General guidance is provided at Annex B

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