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West Midlands Police officers could be made to film stop-searches

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Officers could be made to wear cameras to monitor how they carry out controversial stop-and-search procedures as part of new proposals being considered by West Midlands Police.

The public are being asked for their views on a number of new proposals aimed at improving the force's relationship with residents and boosting its reputation.

Other proposals include mandatory stop-and- search training for all frontline police officers, a social media campaign informing people about their rights and greater use of stop-and-search scrutiny panels.

Police and Crime Commissioner for the West Midlands Bob Jones said: "The power of stop- and-search is a controversial issue for our police officers.

"Many communities support stop-and-search as they believe it has a key role in intercepting people carrying knives, guns and stolen goods.

"On the other hand if it's done badly it can, very much, undermine relationships and the trust of the community if they believe it's done for the wrong reasons at the wrong time."

Under proposals a new website will be set up to log every stop-and-search carried out by officers, with anyone made subject to a search given a reference number to find their details online.

The website will also allow people to see where and when stop-and-searches have taken place.

Data for crime levels could also be listed on the site, allowing people to compare the rate of stop-and-search checks with the number of offences in an area.

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Mr Jones added: "Following detailed discussions at the stop and search summit in September we devised an action plan, which addresses all issues about how officers should be trained, how they should go about doing stop-and-search and how it should be monitored.

"It's a very detailed action plan, but clearly we need to make sure it addresses community concerns."

The deadline for responses to the proposals is December 20. A report on the results will be presented to the Strategic Policing and Crime Board on January 7 next year.

The survey is available on the Police and Crime Commissioner's website.

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