Volunteers wanted to visit
LANCASHIRE Police and Crime
Commissioner Clive Grunshaw is looking for volunteers to check on the welfare of
people in custody. Residents have the chance to get involved and make a
difference to Policing in Lancashire, by becoming an Independent Custody Visitor
There are currently more than 40 volunteer ICV's in the county, who make random
unannounced visits, in pairs, to Police Stations. Their job is to speak to
detainees to ensure they are being treated properly and work with staff to
resolve any issues. Mr Grunshaw said:- "ICV's are absolutely vital
to ensure we continue to work to the highest standards. The wellbeing of
detainees, many of whom can be quite vulnerable people, is very important and by
providing impartial feedback our ICV's help to ensure everyone is treated
fairly. People who find themselves in the cells may have underlying problems
with things like mental health and substance misuse so it is vital they have
access to the help they need."
ICVs are expected to carry out a minimum of 10 visits each year and the
Commissioner is looking to increase the number of volunteers working to ensure
detainees are treated fairly. Mr Grunshaw added:- "ICV's tell me
they find their work rewarding because they have the chance to speak up for
vulnerable people and make a difference to their communities. Volunteering is an
excellent way to give something back to the community, gain new skills and
improve your CV so I hope to see a wide range of applications from people of all
Sheila Maw, an ICV coordinator working in East Lancashire, said the volunteers'
work benefits both detainees and the Police. She added:- "I love doing it;
it is very rewarding work. Going in and seeing people who end up in
custody, makes you think. We tend not to see another side of life and I think it
is something we ought to do."
Tony Mozley, an ICV coordinator working in Blackpool, added:- "I have been
doing it for 13 years after I retired from work 14 years ago and saw an advert
in the paper. There are never 2 days the same. It is rewarding because you feel
like you are doing something useful."
ICV's work with a partner and arrive unannounced at Police Stations. Their
unique status means Police must give them immediate access to the custody area,
cells, detention rooms and charge rooms.
After the visit they prepare a report, a copy of which goes to the Office of the
Police and Crime Commissioner and is forwarded to the custody inspector for any
For anyone interested in becoming an ICV, details are available
or alternatively call Jay Nicholas at the PCC's Office on:- 01772