Home Affairs Committee Press Notice

Policing in the 21st Century

Home Affairs Select Committee takes evidence in Reading

The Home Affairs Committee will hold a public evidence session in Reading Town Hall as part of its inquiry into "Policing in the 21 Century" on Thursday 24 April at 11.00am.

The Committee will take evidence on recruitment and retention of police officers in Thames Valley, ethnic minority recruitment and neighbourhood policing with a series of local witnesses. The Committee will also take comments from a selected audience, made up of representatives of the local police, Reading Borough Council, neighbourhood watch groups and the business and faith communities.

This is one of a series of visits the Committee is making throughout England and Wales to hear from police officers and key partners on the ground; in addition to holding evidence sessions in Westminster.

Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP, Chairman of the Committee said:

"We want to hear about the issues that matter most to people around the country and ask key stakeholders in these regions to help us with our deliberations. The Committee was keen to go out of Westminster to find out what the public expects of 21st century policing. "

"Our attention has been particularly drawn to the fact that Thames Valley is losing a significant amount of specialist police officers to the Metropolitan Police and this is one of the issues we will be exploring."

Oral evidence in public

At 11.10 am

€ Chief Constable Sara Thornton, Terri Teasdale, Head of Personnel, and Maurice Collins, Police Federation Chair, Thames Valley Police;

At approximately 11.40 am

€ Commander Ali Dizaei, President, National Black Police Association

€ Dr Ranjit Manghnani, Development Advisor to the National Policing Improvement Agency

At approximately 12.00 noon

€ Superintendent Steve Kirk, Reading Police

€ John Wright, Community Safer Manager, Reading Borough Council

€ David Betts, Chair, Purley Neighbourhood Action Group

Location: Reading Town Hall

A press conference will be held at 10.45am in front of Reading Town Hall. Please contact Jessica Bridges-Palmer on 020 7219 0724 /07917 488 447 to confirm your attendance.

Details of this inquiry were set out in a press notice issued on 18 January 2008.

The session will be open to the public on a first come, first served basis. There is no system for the prior reservation of seats in Committee Rooms. It is advisable to allow about 20 minutes to pass through security checks. Witnesses, location and timing details are subject to change.