Cleveland Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Steve Turner has been in the spotlight recently and not in a good way. His decision to stand (as a Conservative) in Longbeck Ward for the upcoming Redcar and Cleveland Council elections has brought criticism that he should focus on being PCC.
Turner’s wife Andrea is already a councillor in the same ward and is Leader of the Council’s Conservative group.
This is not the first time the Turners have campaigned together. In 2015 they both ran for council – as UKIP candidates. Steve Turner was elected.
Fighting crime with PR?
Meanwhile back at the PCC ranch Mr Turner is busy recruiting officers but not of the police variety.
A Twitter thread by “Tori” (@skatothecore) revealed the job vacancies advertised for the PCC office.
“The PCC aka Steve Turner is advertising 8 jobs within his office. All of them are PR and research/policy roles. Is this how the public money he has recently acquired being spent? Are any funds going to Cleveland Police to hire PCSOs or PCs?”
The vacancies are for: Engagement Officer; Policy, Partnerships and Delivery Officer and Manager; Research Officer; Performance Analyst; Standard Scrutiny and Accountability Officer; and Business Support Officer.
“Now let’s take a look at job ads on the Cleveland Police’s website. No vacancies available for PCSO’s and one job for a PC.”
We can only hope that a fine-tuned press release will win the battle against crime and anti-social behaviour. Failing that a well-oiled PR machine will certainly boost Turner’s public profile in a position soon up for re-election.
At the crime face
Back at the crime-face, in a bid to save money, Middlesbrough Council plan to turn off over a half of street lights between the hours of 12am and 6am.
In a report to the council dated 24 February, A/Supt Wendy Tinkler, arguing against the dark-streets move, wrote:
“Cleveland has the highest crime rate in England and Wales with 134.9 offences per 1000 population in the year 2022.”