The Policing of Public Space
Recent Developments in Plural Policing in England and Wales
|journal||EJPS (ISSN: 2034-760X)|
|issue||Issue 3: Plural Policing – Guest Editors: Jan Terpstra & Elke Devroe|
|date of publication||Feb. 10, 2015|
This paper reviews contemporary plural policing developments in England and Wales with a focus on the local policing of public spaces. Based on a review of the existing research literature, it sets out developments in pluralization along some of the dimensions of plural policing elucidated by Loader (2000), namely, policing ‘by’, ‘through’, ‘beyond’ and ‘below’ government. This analysis suggests that policing in England and Wales has continued to become more pluralized during the 1990s and 2000s, with significant developments in policing ‘beyond’ government (commercial security) and ‘through’ government (out-sourcing of public policing functions). However, the austerity programme introduced by the Coalition Government since 2010 has seen a slowing of these developments, with an increased emphasis on pluralization ‘below’ government (informal voluntary or community-delivered policing). The paper goes on to consider the regulation and accountability of plural policing, and consider the impact of the introduction of elected Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs). It suggests that whilst PCCs have yet to develop as an effective oversight of plural policing networks in local areas, the reforms may eventually contribute to further fragmentation and pluralization of the policing landscape in England and Wales.