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In profile: Independent police and crime commissioner for Norfolk - Stephen Bett

PUBLISHED: 08:36 15 November 2012 | UPDATED: 18:41 15 November 2012

Stephen Bett launches his PCC manifesto in Norwich.

Stephen Bett launches his PCC manifesto in Norwich. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

Archant Norfolk

The former chairman of Norfolk Police Authority quit in September so he could embark on a campaign as an independent candidate in the race to become the county’s first police and crime commissioner this month.

Mr Bett, who had been chairman for six years, also resigned from the Norfolk County Council Conservative Group (NCCCG) and the North West Norfolk Conservative Association (NWNCA).

Mr Bett’s decision to stand as an independent came after he missed out on being selected as the Conservatives’ candidate for Norfolk in July.

In his election statement, Mr Bett has pledged to keep Norfolk safe, keep party politics out of policing, secure the financial future and be firmly focused on what thecommunity needs.

He said putting the safety of individuals and communities first, he would:

n Keep Norfolk safe as one of the lowest crime counties in the country

n Ensure that police fight serious and organised crime and support vulnerable people, including the elderly and disabled. Priority crimes include drug dealing, sexual offences, domestic violence, hate crime and anti-social behaviour

n Protect the frontline in the face of cuts.

He also said that securing the constabulary’s financial future, he would:

nProtect local policing from privatisation – achieving the savings needed by collaborating with other police and public services, and with the voluntary sector

n Ensure the Constabulary works smarter – using targeting and prevention to reduce demand, working with young people to stay clear of crime and using restorative justice to achieve long-lasting solutions.

And he said making balanced decisions in the best interests of the community, he would:

n Listen to communities and victims

n Reach out to minority communities and the disengaged to ensure policing is fair and equitable

n Be a strong, independent voice, robustly challenging the Chief Constable to deliver what the public needs

n Reject party politics and work with other Independents to provide a national voice.

He added: “Why me? I am the candidate with the most experience of policing.

“I have been on the police authority for 16 years, the last six as chairman. Under my chairmanship Norfolk has become one of safest counties in England.

“We have delivered large savings while increasing efficiency and satisfaction.”

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