Record number of women to govern policing across England and Wales
More than half of the police forces in England and Wales are to be governed by new Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs); Police, Fire and Crime Commissioners (PFCCs); and deputy mayors for policing – including a record number of women.
Last week’s elections saw turnouts of well above 30% in most areas. Some areas recorded turnout in the mid-40s. Voters returned 22 brand new Commissioners and mayors. In addition, Cheshire’s PCC John Dwyer returns to a role he served between 2012 and 2016.
A further 18 PCCs, PFCCs, and Mayors were re-elected, bringing the total to 29 Conservatives, 11 Labour, and 1 Plaid Cymru. All will take up their roles, which include holding their police forces to account and setting policing priorities on the public’s behalf, from Thursday 13 May.
This is the most diverse group of Commissioners and deputy mayors since the role was first created in 2012. It includes 12 women – the highest number to date. Those 12 women, up from six in 2012 and nine in 2016, include nine PCCs, two female deputy mayors appointed by the Mayors in London and Greater Manchester, and also the new West Yorkshire Mayor Tracy Brabin who may appoint a separate deputy mayor in due course.
The new group of PCCs also includes the country’s first black PCC, Festus Akinbusoye in Bedfordshire. The Nigerian-born Conservative has previously served as a Special Constable and worked within the Criminal Justice System as a mentor to young offenders.
With issues like violence against women and girls, tackling neighbourhood crime, and police workforce diversity dominating national conversations on how policing can best serve and protect local communities, it is fantastic to see so many high calibre people in these crucial posts. These are exciting and transformational times in policing and criminal justice.
The Association of Police and Crime Commissioners looks forward to supporting all our members – new and returning – in the coming years.
A full list of election winners is available from the APCC website.