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A few days ago, the Scottish Government announced plans to create a single Police force for the whole country.
That set me thinking…. What could it mean for the sex industry in Scotland ? Would the change be for the better, or for the worse ?
I have yet to be able to set aside some quality time to read through the proposals in detail, but did have a few first thoughts which I’d like to share.
The new Scottish Police force will have a single Chief Constable, and whilst the service would be “independent” would be “subject to parliamentary scrutiny”. Well, a single Chief Constable who might “report” to the First Minister. Is there a chance that political views would be communicated in a forceful and robust manner to this single person, who would then be dictating the strategy for the whole of Scotland ?
I wonder who will appoint the new Chief Constable ? and how much political interference will there be in the process ?
It is said that there will be a “Designated local policing commander and senior fire officer for each local authority area”, but, while at the moment the local chiefs in the area get to dictate policy to a great extent, for example, over how the sex industry is regulated – you only need to look at how the main cities, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Inverness and Aberdeen are treated to see there is a huge difference in that regard – which can be driven by local issues, I fear that a degree of that flexibility may well be lost, and that over things like the sex industry, there could be a drive for a “one size fits no-one” approach.
What does that matter ? Well, consider who will be trying to drive the agenda ? Those in the “rescue” industry and those politicians and activists who want to see the whole thing criminalised will now only have one Chief Constable to try and influence. Get that one person on board and the whole country could have a set of new guidelines, maybe even have a single group of officers to co-ordinate things.
And if they get to influence those that will appoint the Chief Constable in the first place…… the outlook could be pretty grim. We could end up with some of the nastier aspects of recently dumped legislation getting in by the back door, with no legislation, just informal “guidance” used by all.
Food for thought as they say…….
Must find time to read some more. The devil as they say, is always in the detail.