18 June 2020

Have your say on draft guidance around use of a new police IT system

Officers, members of police staff and the public are being invited to give their views on guidance for forces around the use of a new national data service for police in England and Wales.

‚ÄčThe Home Office is developing a new data service, known as Law Enforcement Data Service (LEDS), to bring together the existing Police National Computer (PNC) and incorporate Police National Database (PND) information on one modern and secure platform.

LEDS has been developed by the Home Office to ensure that police and other agencies can quickly and safely access the information they need to better protect the public and safeguard children and vulnerable people. A phased launch of the LEDS system will begin by the end of 2020.

To support the Home Office launch, the College of Policing is writing its Code of Practice for forces, which sets out ten clear principles to ensure the ethical, fair, diligent and impartial use of the system by forces. Other organisations that may have access to LEDS can only do so on condition that they adopt the requirements of the code and the supporting guidance.

The College is also developing guidance on the Code of Practice to support officers and staff to understand their roles and responsibilities around using the new system.

To ensure everyone in policing has a chance to give their views both the Code of Practice and the guidance document will be subject of a three-month public consultation, which opened earlier this month.

David Tucker, crime lead for the College of Policing, said: "In this increasingly digital world it is vital that police forces and other law enforcement agencies have access to accurate and up to date data to help them fight crime and protect the public.

"The Law Enforcement Data Service (LEDS), which is being rolled out in police forces from the end of this year, is a modern system which has been designed to allow officers and staff to quickly and simply find on one platform the information and intelligence they need to help keep people safe.

"To support the Home Office launch of LEDS the College of Policing has developed a draft Code of Practice, which provides a clear framework to balance the rights of individuals with support for law enforcement.

"During this three-month public consultation we are really keen to hear the views and suggestions of officers, police staff and the public on both the Code of Practice itself, which is directed towards the head of each organisation, and the Guidance Document, which aims to support officers and staff in implementing the code locally and understanding their responsibilities."

LEDS will also develop a new National Register of Missing Persons (NRMP), which will support police and other agencies investigating live missing incidents, and help them build a more complete picture of a person reported missing to help assess their risk of coming to harm.

Anyone wishing to take part in the consultation on the LEDS Code of Practice and Guidance Document should visit the College of Policing website.

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