Responding to the National Appropriate Adult Network (NAAN), 'There to Help 2' report, Martyn Underhill, APCC Mental Health & Custody Lead said:
"NAAN’s refresh of their original There to Help report comes at an extremely useful time for Police and Crime Commissioners. In July 2018, the Home Office announced a new voluntary approach for PCCs and local authorities to work in partnership to ensure vulnerable adults receive the necessary support they require when entering police custody.
"In response to this new approach, I wrote to the Policing Minister to formally outline four key asks to improve the system of Appropriate Adult provision, including making this a statutory responsibility for local authorities. I also raised the need for the new approach to be evaluated and requested details of how PCCs could contribute to this analysis.
"It is now nearly 12 months on since the approach was launched, and NAAN’s report provides a strong indication of how police forces and PCCs have increasingly become a stopgap measure in commissioning services. The treatment of vulnerable people in custody is a serious matter. The lack of clarity from the government on who is responsible for funding and commissioning appropriate adult services for vulnerable adults remains a concern."