Articles by Vera Baird
Vera Baird is police and crime commissioner for Northumbria

Funding the fight against hate

Vera Baird  |  24 August 2017

Without an increase in officer levels, the Criminal Prosecution Service’s commitment to tackle hate crime will go unfulfilled, writes Northumbria police and crime commissioner Vera Baird Director of public prosecutions Alison Saunders announced this week that online hate crime will be treated as seriously as the same crime committed face to face. This is not …

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Real-term protection, not real-term cuts

Vera Baird  |  25 October 2016

Now that the latest crime figures, published last week, show both ‘a small but genuine increase in some categories of violent crime’ and an undoubted growth in crime reporting, it is ripe to call time on the Tory claim that the police can be cut because they have less to do. The Office for National …

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The Tories are letting domestic abuse victims down

Vera Baird  |  31 August 2016

The attorney general should not preen himself in the press for his recent success in lengthening jail sentences for robbers and burglars. Instead he should tackle the unduly lenient sentences handed out for domestic abuse – as the Tories’ election manifesto pretended they would. In a typical case at Teesside court, a longterm abuser got …

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Operation Encompass

Vera Baird  |  20 June 2016

A much-praised scheme devised by a former police sergeant from Plymouth is safeguarding children and young people affected by domestic abuse, despite obstacles caused by the government’s academies agenda. Though it received early praise from Ofsted, ‘Operation Encompass’ currently has no support from the secretary of state for education, further evidence following her repeated refusal …

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Robbed of power

Vera Baird  |  7 April 2016

Why Labour needs more PCCs Labour police and crime commissioners contributed most of the budget information Andy Burnham used to deter George Osborne from more draconian police cuts in the comprehensive spending review. Our 13 commissioners govern all metropolitan police forces except London. In the past three years in our elected role we have brought …

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Anonymity argument threatens to turn back the clock

Vera Baird  |  27 April 2015

Vulnerable victims believe that the establishment covers up when highly placed men are accused of sexual abuse, and the Lowell Goddard inquiry seems to confirm that they are right. Ever more colour is added to their fears when each time a celebrity is acquitted of sex crimes the establishment calls, yet again, for rape defendants to …

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Violence against women is not being tackled adequately

Vera Baird  |  18 December 2014

Everywoman Safe Everywhere, Labour’s commission on women’s safety, began its work under my leadership in November 2011. Its aim was to investigate concerns that government policy changes and budget cuts were disproportionately affecting women not just economically, but compromising their safety. Its initial findings just a few months later examined the cumulative impact of legal …

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Policing through rights and respect, not kilos of water

Vera Baird  |  13 June 2014

Police forces across the country work hard, delivering community safety and working with residents to problem solve and cut crime Policing can only be based on partnership. ‘The police are the public and the public are the police’ is the most quoted of the Peelian principles, set out by the founder of the Metropolitan police. …

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Defending CICS

Vera Baird  |  9 November 2012

Conservative MPs would be wise to hold back from defending their government’s awful decision to scrap or slash compensation for innocent people maimed or injured by criminals. They could nail their colours to the mast now but find that they later have to explain that the government got it wrong and succumb to public pressure. …

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Osbornomics is bad for women

Vera Baird  |  22 March 2012

If neoliberalism entrenches the economic, social and structural status quo and denies the state intervention that is imperative to bring change towards equality, with this government, it is not only an economic dogma but a total frame of reference. That is the only realistic explanation for the overall lack of awareness of women’s interests we …

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