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Complaints to WMP reduce as force strives to continue improving 

The number of complaints received by West Midlands Police has fallen by more than a third in the last year, according to new figures.

These reduced by 36 per cent to 501 in 2018/19 - the second most improved in the country - according to today’s report from Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC). 

The number of specific allegations per 1,000 employees also fell by 41 per cent per in the same period - again one of the biggest changes.

The force has further taken action to clear a backlog of appeal cases which heavily impacted upon figures for the number of days it takes to investigate allegations. 

The findings released today show it took an average of 289 working days for WMP to fully look into such matters between April 2018 and March 2019. 

However, subsequent enquiries established this was due to appeals awaiting an outcome - with the majority of the 140 now resolved - meaning the force has already seen a marked reduction in average days and anticipates the statistics to be much improved in future. 

WMP has made changes to its Professional Standards Department (PSD) to improve the initial contact with people who want to raise an issue; while the decrease in complaints also coincides with officers wearing body-worn cameras which captures exactly what happens when they attend a call.

Chief Superintendent Chris Todd, from the force’s PSD, said: "We are committed to offering the best service possible so we can protect our communities across the West Midlands.

"The experiences and interactions the public have with our officers and staff is important to us and we continually strive to improve.

"As the second largest police force in the country we interact with thousands of people every day and there are unfortunately, but inevitably, occasions where we don’t always get things right.

"Any complaint is treated very seriously and we have made strides to improve the initial contact people have with us when raising an issue of concern. There is still room for more improvement and we are looking at further ways of resolving complaints faster to the benefit of the public."

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