Effective Compliance

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9.30 to 13.00 each day

Virtual by Microsoft Teams

Compliance increases when the council does enforcement well, whether through direct action and cost recovery or prosecution. One successful case has a wide reach, but so does ‘getting away with it’. Gathering best evidence is very important and following procedure from first report is crucial for creating a solid case. Is your protocol helping or hindering compliance? Find out how to import good practice to your authority.

The council has a duty to assert and protect public rights of way which are too commonly affected by a landholder's failure to comply with the law, whether wilful or 'accidental' obstruction or damage. Gathering evidence for successful direct action and cost recovery or prosecution is very important, word soon travels that the council does the job right, or not, and compliance spreads when it is the former, so following procedure to create a solid case is crucial.

Offences are usually undeniable so the defence will attack your procedure to avoid admission of guilt. It has been a surprise, even for authorities who consider their enforcement policy to be strong, to find how many loopholes officers can create through lack of procedure. A failed case costs the council in resources for no gain and, very importantly, advertises that offenders 'get away with it', which is very poor public service and a failure of the statutory duty, leaving the authority open to formal complaint or judicial review. This course takes a typical case and identifies the steps of good practice which you can then adopt in entirety or incorporate to improve an existing protocol.

Main topics

  • Criminal Procedure Investigations Act 1996 and the Criminal Procedure Rules 2020 
  • Gathering best evidence
  • Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 code C – Caution and interview process

Key points

  • Successful action gets results as word spreads
  • Procedure is crucial because defendant nitpicks procedure when offence undeniable
  • Consistency of approach  whether direct action-cost recovery or prosecution
  • Build habitual good process, make it automatic for every case

Learning outcomes

  • Appreciation of the importance of procedure
  • Awareness of what is needed to implement procedure
  • Understanding of crucial elements

Level

Intermediate. A working knowledge of rights of way legislation and its practical application is required.

The course is designed for council officers responsible for asserting and protecting public rights of way.

Trainers

Graham Rusling Public Rights of Way and Access Service Manager, Kent County Council

Alison Knight is a senior partner at Alison Knight Training Consultancy and an experienced investigator having held a wide range of operational, training and organisational appointments. Specialising in bespoke advice, training and support for all areas of investigation for the public and private sector.

Cost

Members £242, non-members £346 (+VAT)

Software

MS Teams is widely used software within local authorities and other organisations. If you do not already use Teams, you may wish to install Teams for free on your own computer, or you can join using a web browser on any computer. Some features are not available on the latter but it will not prevent your full participation as we may also use Vevox, which is an app you may wish to install on a smartphone, or is available through any web browser.

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