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Council to raise Police Control Room decision making with First Minister

7th September 2017

The Highland Council has agreed to write to the First Minister regarding Police Scotland's plans for the Inverness Control Room.

The motion which was signed by The Leader of the Highland Council, Margaret Davidson and the Vice Chair of Corporate Resources Cllr Andrew Baxter states: ‘Highland Council is appalled at the circumstances surrounding the future proposed closure of the Inverness Control Room, a facility that has stood the test of time and countless emergencies with distinction. The statement that all the jobs are secure is now in doubt and the promises to bring additional jobs to Highland in a National Database Enquiry Unit are proving false.

`The Council and the Highland public demands answers regarding when the decision to recommend to the Scottish Police Authority to remove jobs from Inverness to the Central Belt/Govan was made and by whom.

`Repeated representations have proved futile so we ask that we now write to the First Minister and make clear how betrayed we feel with the ongoing centralisation of services away from Highland'.

Councillor Davidson has also submitted an FOI request for the Police Scotland business case and has written to the Scottish Police Authority (SPA). She said: "It is outrageous that I have had to go to such lengths to get answers. I can only hope that the SPA will consider all the facts when they scrutinise Police Scotland's proposals later this month."

Councillor Davidson has written to every member of the Police Board individually to get clear answers and has declared the whole process as very unsatisfactory.

Councillor Reiss emphasised the loss of local knowledge, and jobs. At the Caithness Committee he said one reason given was that 14 per cent of calls went unanswered. But he asked about this and he said the truth was the control centre had a quarter of the staff as missing with vacant posts. Call handlers in the new control centre will have to ask more questions to ascertain exactly where people are due to the lack of local knowledge. In 2014 the National Database was to be in Inverness and his question is where is the business case for Inverness to be the centre in 2014. What Changed as result of the decision 20 jobs will be lost to Highland.

 

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