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Police collaboration with other counties

February 27, 2016 3:30 PM

Handshake (collaboration) (By Berdea (Own work based on: File:Handshake icon.svg) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons)

It has sometimes been suggested that Suffolk Constabulary and Norfolk Constabulary should merge into a single unit, or that greater collaboration and sharing of services could assist in cost cutting. The truth is that the two forces already have a range of collaboration agreements in place, and one of the obligations of the Police and Crime Commissioner is to publish details of these agreements.

Currently, shared Norfolk-Suffolk provision of a Joint Information Management Department has been in place since 2013, and a Joint Integrated Offender Management Unit since 2014.

Extending the geographical area further, agreements are in place between Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk for Regional Disaster Victim Identification, an Eastern Region Special Operations Unit, and a Regional Counter Terrorism Intelligence Unit.

And there is a very recent wider collaboration agreement across England and Wales, regarding the provision of armed police from the Civil Nuclear Constabulary. This is a special police force, separate to Suffolk Constabulary, and is responsible for the armed protection of civil nuclear facilities and materials in the UK, both on site and in transit, with a major focus on counter-terrorism. Sizewell is one of the sites that the Civil Nuclear Constabulary polices.

So, while the two constabulary forces appear to be separate, the reality is that they already have much in common, and that some areas of policing transcend county borders and are better handled together.