REVEALED: Volunteer special constable numbers in Tayside down 50% in just five years
The number of special constables in the region has dropped from 127 in 2013 to just 64 this year, according to figures obtained via a freedom of information request. Special constables are part-time, volunteer officers who give up a minimum of 96 hours a year assisting full-time officers out in the field. They have the full range of powers available to full-time officers and are equipped with body armour, handcuffs and a radio — making them indistinguishable from full-time cops. Volunteers are often deployed in supporting roles at events such as football matches or incidents such as major road accidents which require a heavy police presence.
Police carry out controlled explosion at Tesco call centre in Dundee after suspicious package raises bomb fears
Cops have carried out a controlled explosion of a suspicious package at a Tesco call centre in Dundee. The shopping giant’s customer engagement centre on Baird Avenue was evacuated this afternoon after reports of suspicious packages being sent to the building. Tayside Police confirmed on Twitter: “Police Scotland can confirm that shortly after 4pm, a controlled explosion was carried out by EOD on a package found at a call centre in Baird Avenue, Dundee.
Holyrood’s Justice Committee is calling for views on the legislation that brought Police Scotland and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service into being ahead of post-legislative scrutiny of the law. The committee will scrutinise the Police and Fire Reform Act, one of the most significant pieces of legislation since devolution, which sits behind the Scotland-wide organisations. It will look to see if there are parts which could be improved, as well as looking at areas where it is working well. The committee is planning to engage with the organisations created by the act, as well as those who closely interact with them. In particular, it is interested in whether the original aims of the act, namely protecting and improving services, equalising access to specialist support and strengthening connections between services and communities, have been met.
1000 more Scots seek help for viewing online child abuse in a year
The number of Scots seeking help for viewing child abuse images has soared by 1,000 in a year prompting calls for web giants like Google to do more to crackdown on those hosting illegal images. New research from the Stop it Now! Campaign, run by child protection charity the Lucy Faithfull Foundation, shows that across the UK 36,443 people contacted their scheme last year, up by 40 per cent from the 26,089 potential offenders who sought help in the previous 12 months. However, Scotland had the largest rise in the UK – up 55 per cent from 1,614 to 2,508.
France flags 78,000 people as security threats on vast police database sharing information about Europe’s most dangerous residents
France has flagged more than 78,000 people as security threats in a database intended to let European police share information on the continent’s most dangerous residents. The total is more than all other European countries put together, according to an analysis by the Associated Press. The data has led to questions about whether the system is being misused, with different countries applying different criteria.
Renfrewshire paramedics rush to the most drink-fuelled emergencies
Ambulance services have had crews rush to more drink-fuelled emergencies in Renfrewshire than almost anywhere else in Scotland over the last three years. They have been forced to deal with almost 2,000 boozy injuries – an average of two a day. Paramedics insist the real figure is likely to be even higher. The Scottish Ambulance Service says resources are being tied up attending to boozed-up patients. A spokesman said: “Our staff are highly-trained specialist clinicians who all too often have to respond to people who are simply intoxicated.
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