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Independent Custody Visiting

29th December 2021 @ 6:06am – by Police Crime Commissioner
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Check on detainee welfare

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire is looking for volunteers to help conduct visits to the county's Custody Suites.

Independent Custody Visiting is a statutory requirement of Police & Crime Commissioners, providing independent oversight of the detention of people in police custody.

Independent Custody Visitors (ICVs) are independent members of the local community who volunteer their time to check on the welfare of people detained in police custody.

ICVs will make unannounced weekly visits to the custody suite and will speak directly to those people who are being detained. They will check individuals have had access to food and drink, access to solicitors and appropriate adults and phone calls, amongst other things.

ICVs will also observe the physical environment, engage with Custody staff and the Health care professionals to ensure everyone is supported in the best possible way, whilst in custody.

ICVs observe and can make recommendations which require the police to make improvements for the welfare of detainees where necessary, and play a valuable role in maintaining public confidence in this important area of policing.

Despite the Covid-19 Pandemic, ICVs continued to offer welfare checks to detainees and conducted 147 visits in person or telephone calls directly to detainees. The scheme ran throughout the lockdown periods, reverting to a remote visiting scheme, ensuring over 300 detainees still received welfare checks.

To find out more about ICVs and how to apply visit: Jennifer.vandeursen@cheshire.police.uk or 01606 364103.

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