New assistant chief constable backs calls for more collaboration between emergency services

Nav Malik with Chief Constable Alec Wood

Nav Malik with Chief Constable Alec Wood - Credit: Archant

The new assistant chief constable for Cambridgeshire has said legislation which could see the emergency services work more collaboratively would make the force “more resilient and more efficient”.

Nav Malik, who took up the post on June 1, spent most of his career policing in Warwickshire, where he says services are also preparing to work closer together.

“We’ve actually done that, whereby the public services are working together, and by doing it you are definitely more resilient and more efficient,” he told The Hunts Post.

“There’s a huge demand coming through the police service and less so with the fire services - the demand is significantly reduced - so there are options of using the fire services for community reassurance and community cohesion.

“I think it’s a really workable thing and there’s an evidence base now in the country that it works really well and in terms of reassurance.”

The Policing and Crime Bill is still being considered by parliament, but could see the police and crime commissioner (PCC) given control over the county’s fire services.

And Cambridgeshire police are already beginning to embrace potential changes, like shared accommodation.

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Chief Constable, Alec Wood added: “We’re working really closely with our colleagues in fire. I meet regularly with the fire chief and his team and we are already exploring how we can work closer more than we already do in the future.

“Some of that is around back office work, and some to potentially utilise retained fire fighters to do some of the work in communities to relieve PCCs and officers to focus more on crime investigations themselves.

“We’re also actively looking at how we share accommodation in the most effective way, so we are potentially looking at plans to share a police station at Wisbech with fire,” he added.

“There’s already a very conjoined working in Peterborough and we’re now looking to replicate aspects of that across the remainder of Cambridgeshire and in Huntingdonshire as well.”

Mr Malik was welcomed to the force earlier this month, after 26 years of experience in policing, detective work and involvement with organised crime and child exploitation cases.

Mr Wood said: “Nav comes from a very strong crime background and has investigated some very complex cases and dealt with some very challenging cases. He’s got a lot of experience and it’s relevant to this county and the challenges that we face.”