The Police Action Centre is the first dedicated organisation in the UK to provide members of the public, protestors and prisoners a free, confidential and independent advice service on their legal rights if they wish to pursue an action against the police or other state body.
It is also a forum in which the police and the public will have an opportunity to engage and debate on specific topics in order to build a strong and accountable police force.
The Police Action Centre is in addition a think-tank with the aim to identify and highlight areas of change in police policies. We will carry out research-based projects on specific topics and campaign for policy change where it is needed.
Over the years there has been an increased focus on the standard of British policing, especially following the shooting of Mark Duggan, the Riots and the advent of the Police and Crime Commissioners. But there has been no change in how the police have been regulated and monitored.
The changes in the police complaints procedure were introduced in November 2012 and end the opportunity to hold the police to account. The role of the IOPC, formerly known as the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) will be replaced by the Chief Constable of each police force in many circumstances. The police will once again start investigating themselves.
The opportunity to appeal to the IOPC will be reduced to appeals as listed at Regulation 11 of The Police (Complaints and Misconduct) Regulations 2012. The only incidents in which the IPOC will be able to investigate an appeal are those listed at Regulation 30 of The Police (Complaints and Misconduct) Regulations 2012. Please see the link to the Regulations http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2012/1204/pdfs/uksi_20121204_en.pdf.
If you would like further information on the new complaints procedure you can read the Comment is Free article in Guardian Law by our Director http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/libertycentral/2011/apr/08/police-reform-bill-accountability
In the absence of a dedicated police ombudsman the Police Action Centre will fill the gap brought in by the police reforms and be a representative body for those who need information and advice on the complaints procedure. The Police Action Centre is the ‘real IOPC’ and with the support of the public and those challenging the police we can stand together in our fight for justice and peace.
The Police Action Centre supports the work of Northern Police Monitoring Project a grassroots campaigning and advocacy group based in Greater Manchester.