Party politics will count more than prospective commissioner’s police experience, candidates believe.
Police and crime commissioner candidates believe their political party, not their personal credentials or policing experience, will be the biggest factor in their chances of winning the election, a survey has shown.
The Local Government Association (LGA) polled the candidates to ask what they felt would be the major factors in votersâ€™ decisions in Novemberâ€™s PCC elections.
Nearly 80 per cent said party politics would be among the factors that have the most bearing, compared with 33 per cent who said the candidatesâ€™ policing experience and 31 per cent who said the candidates being from the force area.
A total of 53 per cent of those polled said party politics would be the most important factor in how people vote.
â€œItâ€™s concerning that with less than six months until polling day, most would agree that thereâ€™s a consensus of apathy among the public at the prospect of new PCCs.â€
The survey also asked PCC candidates what their priorities would be if elected â€“ 69 per cent said anti-social behaviour while 50 per cent said alcohol-related crime and disorder. A single respondent said gun and knife crime would be a priority.
Three quarters of the candidates believed turnout would be lower than at council elections in May, which attracted only 33 per cent of the electorate.
Mehboob Khan, from the LGA, said: â€œItâ€™s concerning that with less than six months until polling day, most would agree that thereâ€™s a consensus of apathy among the public at the prospect of new PCCs.â€
The survey was sent to 94 PCC candidates and only 36 responded.
The poll results were announced as Falklands War veteran Simon Weston confirmed that he would now not been standing as a police and crime commissioner candidate in Wales.
He former soldier with the 1st Battalion, Welsh Guards, who was seriously injured when the RFA Sir Galahad was bombed at the height of the South Atlantic conflict in 1982, told The Guardian newspaper that he had become disillusioned by the level of politics involved.
See also: The Thin Blue Line