People across Greater Manchester are being given the opportunity to offer their thoughts on police stop and searches – which could influence how the force use the power in future.
Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd is appealing to Manchester residents to report back on their experiences as part of stop and search policy rethink.
The online survey, developed by Mr Lloyd, aims find out how well stop and search is helping to prevent crime and gauge how those most affected by it, including young people and those in the black and ethnic minority communities, view the practice.
Mr Lloyd said: “I need to hear from local people about their experience of stop and search, whether they feel GMP officers use it fairly and in the right place at the right time, and how they think police can use the power in a more targeted way.”
It comes just a few weeks after the Home Office launched a national review into stop and search.
Greater Manchester Police has already made some changes to the way stop and search is used in the area.
Previously officers were required to fill out long forms after an encounter, but since December they are now able to use their radios. This means that stop and search data is more immediately available and can be monitored better.
Yet, Mr Lloyd thinks more needs to be done to improve public confidence in police use of stop and search powers.
He described a public contribution to the issue as ‘vital’.
“There is still some way to go so the public can be confident that stop and search isn’t being abused and the views of local people are vital in helping to shape how it is used going forward,” said Mr Lloyd.
“That’s why I am encouraging people to take part in the survey and have a say in how their communities are policed, because without the public on board neighbourhood policing just doesn’t work.”
Anyone who wishes to give their views on their community policing can answer the survey until Monday August 5.