In the latest in our series of profiles, we talk to Lib Dem PCC candidate Linda Jack...
Linda Jack, the Lib Dem candidate to become Police And Crime Commissioner, was challenged by one voter recently as to what she had done “in the real world.”
She was not short of things that she could list.
While some voters will recognise her from her five years as a Bedford Borough Councillors, others will know her as a former UNISON branch secretary.
Linda has also worked as a youth workers and youth service manager, as a policy advisor for the Financial Services Agency (FSA), started the first Bedfordshire Youth Cabinet, and worked for the armed services in Northern Ireland as an analyst for special intelligence.
And she is just as enthused by the possibility of overseeing policing across the county.
Linda, who lives in Bushmead, said: “In many respects it’s a unique role.
“An elected mayor still has a group he is accountable to, and a cabinet. Whoever is commissioner will have a police and crime panel, but they will only scrutinise what they do after they have done it.
“That’s why my first priority will always be to the people of Bedfordshire. Being a Lib Dem simply tells you what my values are.”
Linda said she would take a holistic view of tackling crime, and said that having a visible figurehead for policing would mean they could challenge other bodies like the health services.
“The commissioner can say ‘Why are we dealing with this? You didn’t deal with this person when they came to you for help in an agitated state,’.”
Her other priorities include youth services to reduce youth offending, restorative justice, and improving relations between minority groups and the police.
She added: “If I am elected I will devote at least half of my time to meeting community groups and people outside of the police, because those are the people who will often have the insights you need on what needs to happen.”