DPFCC praises role of volunteers

As part of National Volunteers Week, Cumbria’s Deputy Police Fire and Crime Commissioner (DPFCC), Mike Johnson, joined two Independent Custody Visitors (ICV) on one of their visits to Carlisle Police Station, inspecting custody cells, charge areas, stores and detention rooms.

In 2022/2023 the ICVs conducted 207 visits to police stations across Barrow, Kendal, Carlisle and Workington. Over this period, 557 people were detained in police custody during the ICV visits.

ICVs are members of the public who give up their own time to make unannounced visits to police custody suites. They independently deliver checks on detainees to see if they have been treated fairly, with dignity and are held in conditions that are safe.

DPFCC, Mike Johnson comments: “Having been a custody visitor myself in the past, I completely understand the importance of our volunteer visitors into custody suites in Cumbria.

“The Independent Custody Visitors do a great job and I commended them for their dedication to making sure that those in police custody are treated fairly and that their mental, physical and emotional wellbeing is taken care of.

“The ICVs act as the community’s eyes and ears in custody suites, providing reassurance to the public that police officers and staff are doing everything they should be within the custody environment.

“It’s important to take time to thank our amazing team of ICVs for everything they do. Their tireless commitment to the role is greatly appreciated and I would encourage anyone with an interest in police custody or community voluntary work to visit our website, as we are currently recruiting more volunteer members.”

For more information or details on how to apply to be an ICV for the PFCC, please visit the Cumbria PCC website: https://cumbria-pcc.gov.uk/what-we-do/custody-visiting/

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