On Monday 11 April the three Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) candidates will be grilled at a Q&A event jointly organised by Chelt Fems and the University of Gloucestershire at the Francis Close Hall campus, Cheltenham. Ahead of the PCC elections on 5 May this will be a chance for the public to put questions about the issues that matter to them to the candidates as the incumbent Police and Crime Commissioner, Martin Surl, will be joined by the Labour candidate, Barry Kirby, and the Conservative candidate, Will Windsor-Clive.
The event is to be divided into two parts: the first (starting at 6.30pm) will be a community hustings with general questions from anyone, the second (starting at 8pm) will have a specific focus on women. People are welcome to attend one or both parts.
Police and Crime Commissioner, Martin Surl, said: “I’m delighted that the University of Gloucestershire and Chelt Fems are putting on this event. I’m really looking forward to having the opportunity to outline the successes I’ve had in my role so far as Police and Crime Commissioner and the plans that I have for the future.”
Explaining why the second half will focus on women, chair of Chelt Fems Jo Bartosch said: “I have to be honest, I didn’t vote in the last PCC election. With a 12 per cent turn out in Gloucestershire I am certainly not alone in that. All of the candidates are male, and as with all elections, young women are the demographic who are least likely to vote. From street harassment, to domestic abuse and sexual violence, women are disproportionately affected by specific types of crime. Moreover, Gloucestershire has one of the lowest rape conviction rates in the country, and as such I think it is of vital importance that we hold those with the power to change this to account.”
Dr Louise Livesey, Senior Lecturer in Criminology at the University of Gloucestershire, will be chairing both parts of the event. Louise said: “Since their introduction the PCCs have become increasingly important and so this election deserves a lot of attention and questioning of the candidates before voters make their decision in May. As an integral part of the Gloucestershire community, it is really good for the university to be helping give the forum for such discussions to take place. The women’s Q&A section is designed to ensure that women’s voices and experiences are explicitly included in the candidates’ thinking.”
Booking is recommended but not essential and anybody is welcome to turn up on the night.
Questions will be invited from the audience during the event, but if you have a question you want to submit for the Chair to ask, please tweet your question to #glospcc2016 or email it to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.