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Democracy and Policing – Challenges and Opportunities

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Monday 20 February 2023

3pm - 4.30pm




H3, Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine


Institute for Social Responsibility

A picture of Emily Spurrell.

In 2012 we went to the polls to elect representatives to a completely new role – that of Police and Crime Commissioner.   Police Authorities were effectively replaced by individuals in a drive to increase the visible democratic accountability of the Police.  The move was initially controversial, with some arguing that this injected too much politics into policing.  Others however felt that the public should have identifiable directly elected figures.  Talking about the proposed new roles in 2010 the then Chancellor George Osborne said “We will empower the public: introducing directly elected Police and Crime Commissioners who will give the public a voice and strengthen the bond between the public and the police through greater accountability and transparency… “

Ten years on the roles have developed and we have become used to seeing Police and Crime Commissioners in the media and out and about in our communities. But what is the role really about?  And what are the challenges for Commissioners who have to provide the democratic accountability while the Police themselves make operational decisions?

On 20 February we welcome Merseyside Police and Crime Commissioner Emily Spurrell to campus. In an In Conversation style event, the Commissioner will talk about her role, her priorities and what the challenges are in an area of more than 1.4 million people.

Emily Spurrell was elected in 2021. She previously served as a Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner and as a Liverpool City Councillor.  An advocate for more women in Politics, Emily helped launch Edge Hill’s Wonder Women Campaign, which marked the 100th anniversary of (some) women getting the vote.

Who is this event for?

Current staff Current students


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