VOLUNTEERS are needed to check on police custody facilities in Cheshire.

David Keane, the police and crime commissioner for Cheshire, is looking to recruit volunteers to help him ensure detainees in police custody are being treated fairly.

Mr Keane is seeking volunteers to join his independent custody visiting scheme to assess the effectiveness of the custody facilities in the county.

Between April 2017 and March 2018, volunteers made a total of 150 unannounced visits to custody suites across Cheshire offering to check on the welfare of 1,189 detainees in police custody.

Mr Keane said “Independent custody visitors (ICVs) play an extremely important role, informing me whether the constabulary is upholding the high standards we expect from them.

“ICVs act as critical friends providing me with invaluable feedback on the welfare of detainees from an independent, impartial and non-discriminatory view of all parties involved in the custody visiting process.”

Stella Lappin, a current independent custody visitor, added: “My role helps me put something back into the community. I feel like I’m making a real difference.

“As part of the role, I visit custody suites to ensure detainees are treated with respect. ICVs are non-judgemental and ensure that all those in custody are treated fairly.”

Successful applicants will be appointed to one of three panels and will undertake random, unannounced visits of police cells to ensure those individuals detained are being cared for appropriately by checking on the conditions and talking with willing detainees.

Volunteers will be expected to make a visit once every six weeks at one of Cheshire Police’s custody suites situated in Middlewich, Runcorn and Chester.

The closing date for applications is 9am on November 12.

For more information click here.