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Monday, August 10, 1998 Published at 06:58 GMT 07:58 UK

UK Politics

Police reforms ahead

Top officers like Sir Paul Condon may undergo different training plans in future

The training and selection of senior police officers is to be looked at jointly by the Home Office and police representative bodies.

They will come under the remit of a working party comprising Home Office officials, the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Association of Police Authorities.

Home Office minister Alun Michael: 'More considered and planned approach'
The Home Secretary Jack Straw is reported to be particularly worried about the lack of talented applicants available to fill some chief constable vacancies.

He is said to be concerned to ensure that the next generation of senior police officers have management and financial skills to push through an efficiency drive which he regards as vital.

New plans to be considered for the first time include chief constables attending top management courses alongside business executives and top civil servants.

The Home Office also believes the police may rely too heavily on graduate entrants and on fast-track promotion schemes.

Civil servants think senior police officers should be matched more carefully to the force they work in.

In future candidates could be graded on the basis of rural or urban suitability.

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