An introduction to public leadership
An introduction to public leadership

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An introduction to public leadership

2.2.1 Public value in policing

In the following video, DCC Garry Forsyth of Humberside Police talks about how the police have worked with other leaders to create public value in relation to night-time alcohol consumption and its attendant problems.

This multi-agency approach to addressing the issue of public safety in the night-time economy which DCC Forsyth describes was pioneered in Leicestershire in 2006, and is now an established practice in many parts of the UK. As he outlines, the success of this kind of venture relies on leaders from several parts of the public sphere building good relationships with each other. This is an excellent example of how the police service as a whole is adopting a systems approach to the services that it provides.

Download this video clip.Video player: ou_futurelearn_police_vid_1022.mp4
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Hello again and congratulations for getting this far in our online course.
In Week 1, we examined leadership in Friday night policing. Like many issues dealt with by public servants, binge drinking can make the news and, as a result, can often catch the attention of local and national politicians. We spoke to Deputy Chief Constable Garry Forsyth about the political dimensions of his work in leading city-centre policing on Friday night.
From our perspective, neighbourhood policing is fundamental to our public engagement. That's something we've worked really hard to retain despite the budget cuts that we've seen. It's really important for us that we have those locally based officers with local relationships that the public feel confident about talking to. And when I'm talking about the public, if you're in the night-time economy perspective, then a large part of the public user is your barkeepers, your shopkeepers, all those people that actually go to form a part of your neighbourhood in that particular location.
Or in terms of leveraging external stakeholders in the public, there's generally four ways of achieving things from our perspective. So there's education. There's engineering, which is obviously done with-- if you're looking at cutting back hedges, installing CCTV. And then there's enforcement. And then finally that is engagement.
So the two ways, talking about leveraging external stakeholders, that are really important in there is the education and the engagement. So in order to educate people, you first have to be engaged with them. And, actually, engagement for us is really, really important because engagement needs to be a two-way conversation.
It can't just be me telling people about something I want them to know. It's really important, from my perspective, if we're really going to get the public support that we need to get the maximum leverage from that public engagement, we have to listen to what they want. We have to make sure that we are responsive and our activity is shaped to what they are saying they need and want. When I've got that, then I'm in a much stronger position to be able to achieve the education aspect of it as well, because we've got a relationship of trust.
They know that I care about them. They know that I'll respond to what their needs and concerns are. And on that basis, they're much more inclined to listen to what we have to offer and what we have to say.
The public is a massive resource for us. And one of the things that I'm proudest of around British policing is that the public are the police and the police are the public. So we police by consent with the model that we have here. And that's fundamental to how we do it because we're a relatively small force in a huge population. And we enjoy the fantastic support of the public to be able to deliver the security that everybody enjoys whether or not they think they use the police or not.
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