Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Police Accountability

Julie Bindel writes for the Guardian's CiF about the police's poor performance on rape cases. She claims that in order to make the police better at dealing with these crimes it should be possible to sue them:
Nothing will significantly change unless the commissioner or chief constable ceases to have this unjustifiable protection from the courts. If the police budget were to become vulnerable to compensation claims, it might result in systems being put into place to root out incompetence and prejudicial attitudes towards vulnerable complainants.
She's quite right. But why leave it to the courts to decide whether the police are doing their job properly? Why not let the people do it? Just as the possibility of being sued encourages better performance so does the threat of loss of income. Allow private firms to investigate crimes and let people choose who to trust with the job and we have a simple answer to Julie's headline question:
Who will challenge this obscene protection racket?
The market.

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