Father Christmas comes early

Early morning meeting with Sir John Stevens, Metropolitan Police Commissioner, at New Scotland Yard.

This was to be about a range of issues – and included my work on telephone response in the Met. I had exposed publicly last year what everyone knows locally – that it is very difficult to get through to you local police station by phone.

I had got my team to phone every police station in London that was open to the public. 40% never answered. Following my report, this has shot up the police agenda and I am tracking it through to make sure change is delivered. I am also championing (with some success) customer satisfaction surveys as the means of judging police performance.

The Met have tended to have performance indicators and targets as their measure of success, rather than looking at the impact they are having in terms of public satisfaction. So I am quite pleased that after a long struggle this appears to be moving my way.

And then there was the issue of the Muswell Hill police station front counter. Not one to lose an opportunity – since Sir John had publicly lent his support to my campaign on this – I updated him by saying it still wasn’t open and explained that the local police commander had done all the detailed planning and costings, but was held up trying to find funding.

Basically Sir John said funding shouldn’t be a problem, this could all happen quite quickly now – and moreover he would come and open the counter with me! Father Christmas lives!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all.