Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The Best Way to Run the Met for the Public

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The Best Way to Run the Met for the Public

Article excerpt

AMERICAN-STYLE elected police commissioners come a step closer to reality in Britain today as the Tories announce proposals that would tighten the mayor's grip over the Met. The idea of making the police more responsive to public demands was already set to be a part of the party's election manifesto. But Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling now wants to abolish the Metropolitan Police Authority, composed of unelected appointees and chaired by the mayor, and instead make the Mayor in effect an elected police commissioner.

The tangled web of political responsibility for the Met has already been reshaped by Boris Johnson. He forced out Met chief Sir Ian Blair last year despite the then Home Secretary Jacqui Smith's support for him. Now, if the MPA is to go, it removes a layer of bureaucracy and a monthly reporting obligation for Sir Ian's successor. In turn, oversight of the Mayor in his new police commissioner role would be provided by the London Assembly. …

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