Julia Mulligan, the newly elected police and crime commissioner for North Yorkshire, spoke to crime reporter JENNIFER BELL about her first full days in her new job.
Julia Mulligan has vowed that appointing a new chief constable will be her top priority.
Yesterday – a week after winning at the polls for the region’s first ever police and crime commissioner – Mrs Mulligan spent the day meeting victims of crime and out on the beat with officers as she began her term in office.
Speaking to The Press, Mrs Mulligan – who won with 54 per cent of the votes – said the uncertainty surrounding the force’s current chief constable needed to be addressed as a top priority.
Tim Madgwick, North Yorkshire Police’s former deputy chief constable, temporarily took over the reins in May from former chief Grahame Maxwell.
A permanent chief has yet to be appointed and Mrs Mulligan – who has the power to hire and fire the force’s top ranking officer – has revealed she will be advertising the role as well as hiring an independent panel of advisors.
She said she wants to ensure a transparent recruitment process and has vowed to hire the “best person for the job”. Mr Madgwick has already confirmed he has thrown his hat in the ring for the position.
Speaking after a press conference at Harrogate Police Station yesterday, Mrs Mulligan also outlined proposals for a new Victims’ Charter, which would offer further support for victims of crime.
During her campaign, Mrs Mulligan had vowed to put “victims at the heart” of her work, saying that she is determined to be “a voice for the people”.
She said: “Today is the beginning of a new era in local policing and crime reduction. I deliberately wanted to send a very clear message on my first day that I am here to give both local people and victims of crime a stronger voice in local policing. This is why I have decided that my very first meeting as the new commissioner should be with victims of crime and their representatives.
“I also want to announce today that over the next two months, I will be working with the police, Victim Support and other organisations to develop a local Victims’ Charter. The charter will focus on victims of crime and antisocial behaviour and will involve a two-month period of research.
"People will be able to have their say on Twitter, by Facebook and to contact my office directly via email. I will also be running a series of focus groups with victims of crime and with voluntary organisations involved in supporting victims.”
Mrs Mulligan also said the first decision she will make as PCC would be deciding the future of the force’s mobile safety camera van, which was launched on July 1 last year and has seen more that 16,000 speeding motorists caught.
A report will go before the PCC on Wednesday outlining the proposed ongoing expansion of the current pilot operation to a fully commissioned, expanded operation.