Recruiting Scotland’s police chief

THE search is under way to recruit the new Chief Constable of the Police Service of Scotland. The post was advertised on Monday and comes with a salary of £208,100 a year.

The successful candidate, due in post by October, will shape and lead what will be the second largest force in the UK with more than 17,000 officers and around 6,500 support staff.

The chief constable will work closely with the chairman of the new Scottish Police Authority to ensure a smooth transition to the new service, which aims to be operational on April 1 next year.

It will bring together eight police forces, the Scottish Police Services Authority and the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency into a single service to save the taxpayer £1.4 billion over 15 years.

Opposition MSPs have accused the Scottish Government of having its priorities wrong, with Labour claiming the reforms are “bungled” with thousands of police support staff losing their jobs.

But Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill said: “This is a historic opportunity for the first Chief Constable to shape and lead the new Police Service of Scotland. They will work closely with the Chair of the new Scottish Police Authority, who will hold the Chief Constable and the new service to account.

“It’s a unique and exciting time to be part of the police service in Scotland - recorded crime is at a 37 year low and there are record numbers of police officers in communities. Policing in Scotland is already excellent – but the new service gives us a unique opportunity to do more and build on those strengths.

“The role will be one of the most demanding and high profile policing posts in the UK, leading engagement with the public, private and voluntary sectors across Scotland, the UK and internationally.

““The new Chief Constable will be a role model for the values of the police service, providing inspirational leadership, determining the future shape of policing as part of an ambitious programme of public service reform across Scotland.