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Rate my police sites can expect a rough ride



The home secretary's ambition to allow citizens to review police services online will face resistance from police representatives if reaction to the first such service to go live is any guide.

Leicestershire Police was last week the first to introduce a 'Trip Advisor-style' service, through which people who have had an interaction with the force can rate their experience with up to five stars. There is also space for additional comments and information.

Chief Constable Simon Cole said: "Leicestershire Police wanted to provide the public with a simple way of giving honest feedback about the service they receive. I'm incredibly proud that our force is the pioneer of this new tool."
However according to the police website, the powerful Police Federation, which represents officers, has expressed concerns that the service will be "just another stick with which to beat police officers".

The site quote Leicester's Police Federation Chairman, Tiffany Lynch, saying: "I can't help but be a little concerned. This scheme has been likened to Trip Advisor which is for rating a completely different type of service.  I also have some reservations about how 'Rate Your Local Police' will be used by the public and how the force itself will handle the feedback it receives. We expressed our concerns to the chief constable before the scheme was launched."

She added: "With robust complaints procedures already in place, I hope that this doesn't just become another stick with which to beat police officers."

The site currently gives the force a three-star rating.

Officers' comments on Police Oracle include: "Another completely stupid idea.....God help us from these people"... "Another daft idea in search of the holy grail of public confidence"... and "What next, Ouija boards for CID?"

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