APCC chair statement on operation early dawn

From: Association of Police and Crime Commissioners
Published: Thu May 23 2024

The Chair of the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) Donna Jones reaction to proposals that police should consider pausing some arrests because of the lack of space in English prisons

"The overcrowding in prisons is not an issue for Chief Constables or Police and Crime Commissioners. The job of the police is to keep the public safe - it is what we pay them to do. They must continue to arrest suspects as usual so that those who commit crimes and cause harm to others are taken off the streets. 

“Managing the prison population is for the Ministry of Justice. The impact of not arresting suspected criminals will have consequences. It is not a position I can support."

Donna Jones was commenting following media reports that the National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) wrote to chief constables in England about the activation last week of Operation Early Dawn by His Majesty's Prison and Probation Service to alleviate prison capacity pressures until the introduction of an extension to the End of Custody Supervised Licence scheme to 70 days. NPCC guidance issued to chief constables states that consideration should be given to pausing non priority arrests and planned police operations that might result in large numbers of arrests.

Notes to editors

  • Donna Jones is the Chair of the APCC and PCC for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.
  • The extension of the End of Custody Supervised Licence Scheme to 70 days (from 35) is due to be introduced on 23 May 2024.
Company: Association of Police and Crime Commissioners

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