The Police Reform Act 2002 enables Chief Constables to grant certain low-level Powers to persons not employed by the Police – such as Neighbourhood Wardens, Security Guards or VOSA Enforcement Liaison Officers.
Purpose of the Scheme
To empower companies and authorities whose remit is to contribute to community safety and security and in co-operation with the police, combat crime and disorder, public nuisance and other forms of anti-social behaviour. CSAS Accredited Persons are part of what has come to be called the extended police family, but are not employed by the police.
Who Can Apply
Bodies such as local authorities or private companies that have high standards of practice in areas of discipline, complaints, grievance, equal opportunities, officer development and training can apply for accreditation. They must be fit and proper to supervise their Accredited Persons employees in the carrying out of the functions for the purposes accreditation was granted.
Accredited Persons must be employed in a community safety role and be fit and proper to carry out the functions and receive adequate training for the exercise of those Powers. To that end robust vetting procedures are in place and very high standards of accredited training are mandated for all potential Accredited Persons.
Accredited Persons are issued with powers to address certain issues on the spot, without involving the police for example:
- Issue Fixed Penalty Notices and Penalty Notices for Disorder
- Request a name and address for penalty notices, offences that cause injury, alarm and distress; a person acting in an anti-social manner; deal with begging; road traffic offences
- Confiscate alcohol, cigarettes and tobacco products from young people
- Require removal of abandoned vehicles
- Control traffic, stop cyclists if riding on footpath
- Stop a vehicle for emissions testing
Accredited Persons are only awarded those powers appropriate to their roles.
Joint operating and information sharing protocols are agreed between the organisation and the constabulary.
Accredited Persons, when using their powers, will carry proof of accreditation and official identification; they must wear a prescribed uniform that has the CSAS insignia thereon (except in the case of Trading Standards Officers). Accredited Person’s uniform is distinctly different to the uniform worn by the police.