Date Responded 09 September 2020

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked:


  1. Please provide statistics on the number of complaints considered by the force’s professional standards department, or equivalent, per year (annual or financial, whichever is easier for your recording practices) since 2009
  2. Please provide a breakdown according to the following criteria. If any of them are not possible to provide figures for, please let me know why:

-     Outcome: in what way was the complaint dealt with, how was it resolved and did it result in any disciplinary action

-     Type of complaint: what the complaint related to e.g. conduct, use of force etc

-     Protected characteristics and discrimination: the number of complaints that alleged discrimination on the basis of race, sexuality, disability or other characteristics

-     Who the complaints were from: e.g. police officers, staff, members of the public or any possible breakdown of those categories, such as age

In Response:

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Professional Standards Department of Northumbria Police.  I can confirm that the information you have requested is held in part by Northumbria Police however cannot be disclosed for the following reasons.

The information requested is not held in a format that would allow its extraction within the 18 hour threshold.  You are asking for information for a 11+ year time span.  The details you are asking for would require all complaint cases to be manually reviewed to extract the specifics of your request.  This cannot be achieved within the prescribed time limit and would far exceed it, therefore Section 12(1) of the Freedom of Information Act would apply.  This section does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimated that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit of 18 hours, equating to £450.00

You should consider this to be a refusal notice under Section 17 of the Act for your request.

As your request would exceed the prescribed limit, as defined by the Act, there is no requirement for Northumbria Police to provide a response to the remaining parts of your request.  However, in order to provide you with some assistance, under Section 16 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, an initial assessment of the information that may be provided within the time constraints would be for a much shorter time period, suggested as 2 years.

If this would be useful, you may wish to refine and resubmit your request accordingly.

Alternatively you may wish to review information already published at the below sites which may provide you with some information for a longer time frame:

IOPC Annual Stats

Archived IPCC stats

IOPC Force level quarterly stats

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