A survey has shown that 93% of people in North Wales have confidence in the way the region is policed.

The independent study commissioned by the force into public confidence also revealed that 80% of the respondents believe the region is safer than the rest of the United Kingdom.

The telephone survey was carried out by Opinion Research Services between September and November 2020.

It covered specific issues asking residents for their opinions on such matters as public confidence, quality of service and policing priorities and found that the force scored highly for its approach across most areas.

Around 96 per cent felt safe in their homes in their local community day while 92% also felt “generally safe from crime and disorder”.

Over 9 in 10 residents agreed  the police in North Wales would treat them with respect if they had contact with them for any reason, whilst over four fifths agreed that the police treated everyone fairly regardless of who they were.

Residents were asked about policing resources and 48% responded that in their view the force was under resourced although three quarters said the police do a good or excellent job in their area.

Overall, residents felt the most important priorities for North Wales Police were:

  • protecting children and young people from sexual exploitation and abuse
  • answering and responding promptly to emergency 999 calls
  • protecting children online
  • tackling organised crime and preventing serious harm
  • protecting vulnerable adults from harm and abuse.

There was also backing for the way the force had policed the pandemic with 70% of residents feeling that the police had struck a good balance in dealing with COVID-19 lockdown rules and regulations. Over four fifths of those questioned supported police action to enforce local lockdowns.

Deputy Chief Constable Richard Debicki welcomed the survey’s findings.

He said: “In what has been a difficult year it is reassuring to see that the vast majority of people have confidence in the work we are doing to help make North Wales the safest place in the UK and that they share our key priorities.

“We have placed a significant emphasis on protecting vulnerable people – victims of domestic abuse, child sexual exploitation, sexual abuse and organised crime.”

“In line with the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Plan, we will continue to focus our efforts in protecting the most vulnerable people in society.

“Our communities rightly want to be reassured that we are protecting them, that they will get help when they need it, and that they are able to talk to people who understand their problems. The findings of this report demonstrate that we are doing just that and with the public’s support we will continue to do so.”

“We are absolutely not complacent though, and we know from our role in helping to stop the spread of COVID 19 and working to protect the NHS that we need to have the support and help of our communities – the public have really helped us throughout, which I believe is testimony to the strong relationships that we have, and I am really grateful for that. We will do everything that we can to maintain and build that trust.”

North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner, Arfon Jones, said: “I would like to congratulate North Wales Police on the fantastic results of this survey which clearly demonstrate the high regard in which they are held by the people of North Wales.

“The findings are a real vote of confidence and a tribute to the skill and dedication of the force’s officers and staff who do a brilliant job in often difficult and sometimes dangerous circumstances.”

“This past year has been an exceptionally tough time for everybody as a result of the pandemic and it has made policing even more difficult than usual.

“It was therefore particularly pleasing to note that the public supported the way the force had responded to the unprecedented challenges created by the situation.

“It is clear the force has been focusing on the priorities in my Police and Crime Plan and that has played a part in ensuring that people rightly believe that North Wales is safer than the rest of the United Kingdom.”