SPA public meeting to focus on Police Scotland performance


SPA Board Meeting Stirling

The Scottish Police Authority (SPA) will hold a public meeting on Thursday 27 August from 11am in Stirling. 

The focus of the meeting will be oversight of Police Scotland’s performance against both the strategic priorities and operational performance over the first three months of the reporting year.

The meeting is expected to be the last full SPA board meeting to be chaired by Vic Emery who will step down next month following his 3-year-tenure as Chair. 

Speaking ahead of the meeting, Mr Emery said:

“We all acknowledge that it has been a difficult summer for policing with a number of issues and incidents drawing considerable scrutiny, comment and opinion. This week’s public meeting of the SPA provides a timely opportunity to assess how Scotland’s policing arrangements are progressing against the aims and objectives of reform, and how the service is performing for the public and for the people who work within it.

“Those issues and incidents I refer to are the subject of ongoing and independent investigations and reviews and rightly will not be the subject of detailed discussion by the SPA and Police Scotland before they have concluded. However, the broader issues that have been the subject of comment will be covered on our agenda – call handling, staff absence, contact with the police, and budget pressures among others. The core of the meeting will be devoted to how policing has performed over the first three months of this year, and an assessment of how policing is performing in the round against its longer-term strategic objectives.

“That focus on how far we have come, as well as the here and now, is an important one. The reform of policing from a multi-force structure to a national service has always been more than just a merger of nine organisations into one. It is a long-term process of change and realising all the benefits of operating as a single national service will take time.

“The performance information we will consider will show evidence that many key areas of policing in Scotland are stronger today than they were under the previous multi-force system. That has been done alongside successful efforts to end duplication and necessary work to reduce the costs of policing. That data will also signpost where further work is needed, and where there are inevitable pressures from the requirement of policing to generate cashable savings from a relatively narrow proportion of our budget and activities.

“There is more of the journey of reform ahead of policing than behind it. As I approach what is likely to be my final meeting as chair of the SPA, we need to keep both perspective on the scale, and faith in the ambition, of the collective challenge we embarked upon less than three years ago.”

The Authority is the body responsible for driving improvement in Scottish policing and holding the Chief Constable of Police Scotland to account. Interested members of the public and representatives of the media are welcome to attend and observe the meeting. 

A full agenda and papers relating to this meeting have been published on the Scottish Police Authority website at:

For those unable to attend in person, the Authority will live stream meetings online. The live streaming of the Scottish Police Authority meeting can be accessed at:

However, please be aware live streaming of the SPA Board meeting could be interrupted due to transmission issues beyond our control.

The SPA will also be live tweeting from the public meeting. The SPA’s corporate account can be followed at @ScotPolAuth. Follow us to be kept updated during the meeting.