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Professional Practice

The Association of Chief Police Officers is responsible for defining national standards and professional practice in key areas of policing. Standards and practice provide a framework which supports accountability, interoperability and improvement in working practices across the police service and its partners. In high risk areas of policing they help ensure consistency of approach, underpin training and business processes and thereby better protect the public. All standards and practice are agreed collectively by Chief Constables through the College of Policing Professional Committee and Chief Constables' Council before adoption. ACPO guidance and practice advice defines nationally agreed good practice for forces, but accountability as to whether to adhere to such guidance rests with chief constables who are operationally independent.


Working with the College of Policing, ACPO is moving towards a framework of national standards and Authorised Professional Practice (APP) which will ensure material is proportionate and targeted at the areas of highest risk. In support of this, a comprehensive review of all ACPO practice is taking place with an aim to consolidate and refine the current amount of products. This is aligned to the Government’s Reducing Bureaucracy agenda and supports ACPO’s new role in setting national standards and building professionalism, as set out in the Government's Policing in the 21st Century white paper.

In this section you will find the published guidance listed by national policing business area. This will be updated to reflect the result of the review.