Resourcing impact of supporting "Tracker" car location system requests.

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Dear West Midlands Police,

I am very interested in the relative resourcing provided to different kinds of roads policing in the West Midlands, specifically the effort devoted to protecting vulnerable users (where the WM area appears a poor performer for road safety) Vs other kinds of roads policing

I believe the West Midlands is party to the Tracker vehicle location arrangements agreed between ACPO and successors, and takes calls and progresses these to combat acquisitive crime.

Can you please advise on the best approximation for the policing effort annually that Tracker support activities takes up (in FTE, person hours, or whatever values are convenient), ideally by year for the last 5 years. Or, it that is too onerous, the last full year.

Thanks in advance

Yours faithfully,

Mr D Murphy

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Dear D Murphy

 

FOI Request Reference: 013863/19

 

Thank you for your request for information, received 09/08/2019

 

REQUEST

 

I am very interested in the relative resourcing provided to different
kinds of roads policing in the West Midlands, specifically the effort
devoted to protecting vulnerable users (where the WM area appears a poor
performer for road safety)  Vs other kinds of roads policing

 

I believe the West Midlands is party to the Tracker vehicle location
arrangements agreed between ACPO and successors, and takes calls and
progresses these to combat acquisitive crime.

 

Can you please advise on the best approximation for the policing effort
annually that Tracker support activities takes up (in FTE, person hours,
or whatever values are convenient), ideally by year for the last 5 years.
Or, it that is too onerous, the last full year.

 

RESPONSE

 

I am writing to inform you there is no specific recorded information held
by West Midlands Police.

 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

 

For further information and data on West Midlands Police see our
publication scheme and disclosure log

 

[1]http://foi.west-midlands.police.uk/

 

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If you require any further information, then please do not hesitate to
contact me.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

Many thanks

 

Michelle Richardson | Freedom of Information
Corporate Communications | West Midlands Police
T: 101 (ext. 801 2068)

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Dear West Midlands Police,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of West Midlands Police's handling of my FOI request 'Resourcing impact of supporting "Tracker" car location system requests.'.

My request asked merely for a " best approximation for the policing effort
annually that Tracker support activities takes up (in FTE, person hours,
or whatever values are convenient), ideally by year for the last 5 years.
Or, it that is too onerous, the last full year"

I am told that no information is available, which I do not find credible within the operations of a modern, well managed police force. The agreement originally set up by ACPO (which took considerable effort to wrest from them !)on behalf of subscribing forces, uniquivocally posits the operation of 'fast track' route for incoming Tracker related calls, and prioritised intervention. So I find it hard to believe the Tracker organisation are ringing 101 and sitting in the long IVR queues with ordinary folk, rather than having semi- or dedicated call handling and dispatching support as a minimum, with follow up investigation/recovery being prioritised subsequently

While I understand I may be uncomfortable to explicitly state what the resource implications of a 'fast track' service you've inherited - which primarily assist just wealthier demographic - I don't think seeking to mask or cover up the matter is the right way forward in current much-reduced resourcing circumstances, where prioritisation and its impact should be transparent and have clear justification accepted at CC and PCC levels.

Accordingly I'd ask for a re-think on this

Thanking you in advance

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/r...

Yours faithfully,

Mr D Murphy

Freedom of Information,

4 Attachments

Dear Mr Murphy

 

FOI Internal Review Reference: 015812/19

 

Thank you for your correspondence, received 11/09/2019 where you requested
West Midlands Police to review its response to your request for
information concerning West Midlands Police being party to the Tracker
vehicle location arrangements agreed between ACPO and successors. You
asked for a best approximation for the policing effort annually that
Tracker support activities takes up by FTE, by year for the last 5 years.
Or, the last full year.

 

The force responded on 4^th September 2019, under reference number
13863/19, and advised that there was no specific recorded information held
in relation to your request.

 

REQUEST

You have requested the force to review the response provided on the basis
that you do not find it credible that the Tracker organisation are ringing
101 and sitting in the long IVR  queues rather than having semi- or
dedicated call handling and dispatching support as a minimum, with follow
up investigation/recovery being prioritised subsequently

 

RESPONSE

The response has now been reviewed and the force revises its reply to
advise that the request for `a best approximation` of policing effort/FTE
is not a valid Freedom of information Act request as it does not fulfil
Section 8 of the Act. It is not a request for specific recorded
information and the authority does not have to answer your question if
this would mean creating new information or giving an opinion or judgement
that is not already recorded. `A best approximation` is not a request for
specific recorded information and therefore this invalidates the request
under Section 8 of the FOIA and the request should have been refused on
this basis.

 

However, in order to assist, I can confirm that searches were conducted to
ascertain if relevant information was held and this returned a negative
result. The force therefore maintains that you were correctly advised that
no specific recorded information is held in relation to your request.

 

In order to clarify and assist further, I can advise that the policing
effort that Tracker support activities takes up is not recorded, any
activity undertaken would form part of an individual`s usual duties and it
is not recorded separately. Also, there is not a dedicated number that
Tracker call – any tracker company reporting a stolen vehicle would call
through on the 999/101 numbers. The force would then circulate
observations and dispatch a vehicle as appropriate. Recovery would not be
prioritised over other vehicle crime, and decisions would be made based on
the information gathered using the THRIVE process. The force`s current
average speed to answer 999 is 9 seconds.

 

I hope that this is of assistance and clarifies the matter.

 

If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review, you have
the right to apply directly to the Information Commissioner for a
decision. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: Information
Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9
5AF

 

If you require any further information, then please do not hesitate to
contact me.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Mrs R Williams

 

 

59614 Rebecca Williams l FOI Manager

Lloyd House l West Midlands Police

T: 101 (ext 801 2068)

Preventing crime, protecting the public and helping those in need.

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alteration of this email is strictly forbidden. Views or opinions
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Midlands Police. All West Midlands Police email activity is monitored for
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dennis fallon left an annotation ()

Mr Murphy, Your question has produced an interesting revelation. it would be useful if YOU, and only YOU, could add a final request to the police for them to put it on the record, saying, "on the basis of your reply are you advising that the police do not have a dedicated system in place to react urgently to vehicle thefts in which trackers have been activated, because at the moment owners who have fitted trackers assume they will receive priority attention because their stolen vehicle can be quickly and precisely located before the tracker is disabled"

Mr D Murphy left an annotation ()

Dear Mr Fallon, thanks for your interest and suggestion. But as my question has been answered I'm not minded to take up any more of their time. My interest in this relates to why performance in protecting vulnerable road users is so very very poor (both nationally compared to D/DK/NL (google PACTS report on this) - and within England the WMMA area as a 'bottom performer'). However, while ignoring this issue almost totally, the constabulary at the same time obsesses about 'driver-on-driver' violence (90 tickets per day on M/ways and A-roads; UK driver safety is already 'world beating') and acquisitive crime affecting drivers.

dennis fallon left an annotation ()

Mr Murphy, this is a great forum for exchanging knowledge. WM police have retreated into a limited number of stations where their vehicles are based, rather than stationed in the community or patrolling, and so their response times are not good.It is no surprise that they can only react to violent incidents, facebook insults or climate change protesters.BUT be very careful driving uphill on the dual carraigeway of New John Street because the 30mph enforcement works 24/7, despite commonsense saying it should, IN FAIRNESS, be 40 mph minimum.