Terrorist incidents see rise in confidence in the police

By agency reporter
December 29, 2017

Public confidence in the police service has risen following the police response to recent terrorist incidents, according to the latest research carried out for Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS).

The research was carried out by Ipsos MORI to gauge the public’s perceptions of crime, safety and local policing. The survey of over 12,000 people across England and Wales is similar to work carried out in 2015 and 2016 and was commissioned in order to inform HMICFRS’ inspections into police efficiency, effectiveness and legitimacy – the PEEL reports.

HM Inspector Matt Parr said: “After a year in which the emergency services have faced some of the most challenging incidents in recent times, it is encouraging to see that the public’s confidence in the police to protect them against terrorism has increased markedly, with over half of people saying they are confident in the police response.

“Research carried out for us by Ipsos MORI has demonstrated that the public still value their local police force. Most participants – around two-thirds – identified that the response of police to emergencies was the most vital service, and almost three-quarters of respondents thought the police was effective in doing this.

“The importance of visible local policing continues to resonate with the public – over eight in ten said that it was important to have a regular uniformed presence. But, the number of people who have not seen a police presence in the last year has risen from just over a third in 2015 to almost half this year.”

The main priorities for policing were identified by respondents as:

  • responding in person to emergencies – 67 per cent
  • tackling crime of all types – 63 per cent
  • countering terrorism and extremism – 56 per cent.

The research also found that:

  • some 53 per cent of people say they are satisfied with their police service, broadly the same as last year
  • the proportion of people saying the service has got worse has increased to 25 per cent this year, compared to 20 per cent last year
  • the majority of participants consider the police to carry most responsibility for the safety of victims of stalking and harassment, missing people and victims of domestic abuse
  • interest in what the police are doing locally has increased with four in five saying they are interested, compared with three in four last year.

The research demonstrated that 30 per cent of people continue to be concerned with crime and anti-social behaviour in their local area in the last year, up from twenty five per cent last year. However, although online crime is generally highlighted as a concern by the majority of participants (73 per cent), this has dropped slightly from last year (82 per cent).

* Download the report Public Perceptions of Policing in England and Wales 2017 here

* HMICFRS is an independent inspectorate, inspecting policing and fire and rescue services in the public interest. It assesses and reports on the efficiency and effectiveness of police forces and fire and rescue services. https://www.justiceinspectorates.gov.uk/hmicfrs/

[Ekk/4]

Although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Ekklesia, the article may reflect Ekklesia's values. If you use Ekklesia's news briefings please consider making a donation to sponsor Ekklesia's work here.