Melton volunteers aged 18 plus are encouraged to become independent custody visitors

Melton volunteers, aged 18 plus, are being encouraged to become independent custody visitors EMN-151206-115301001
Melton volunteers, aged 18 plus, are being encouraged to become independent custody visitors EMN-151206-115301001
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Volunteers in Melton, aged 18 plus, are being encouraged to become independent custody visitors.

The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) is on the lookout for a team of volunteers to make unannounced welfare checks on people in custody.

Volunteers will be given full access to people who have been detained in any of Leicestershire Police’s custody suites, to carry out checks on their welfare and the general condition of the suites.

Leicestershire’s police and crime commissioner Sir Clive Loader said: “Independent custody visiting is primarily designed to highlight any current, or potential, issues in the custody areas.

“If there is a problem or complaint, most issues are dealt with at the time. However, more serious issues are forwarded to the police to resolve and the outcome is reported back to me.

“I believe the fact that custody suites are subjected to an independent assessment gives members of the public greater confidence in the custody system and I’m tremendously grateful to those people who give up their time to carry out these visits.”

Independent custody visitors co-ordinator Frank Cowlin said: “We’re looking to recruit people who are over 18 and from a variety of backgrounds so that we reflect the police area population.

“We’d like to see younger people joining the scheme. The time involved is not huge, on average you will need to do a minimum of one visit a month, but you can do more if you choose.

“The training we get is very good and you will go on your first few visits with experienced visitors. There is really good continuing training. The scheme has gained accreditation by Investors in Volunteers.”

If you are over the age of 18 years old, live in the force area and have been resident in the UK for at least three years you can find the application pack at www.leics.pcc.police.uk

Full training is given and expenses paid. The deadline for applications is Tuesday, June 30.

To volunteer or for more information email alex.adley-sweeney@leics.pcc.pnn.gov.uk or call the OPCC’s office on (0116) 229 8980.