Cheshire Constabulary has been judged 'good' at treating all the people it serves with fairness and respect and 'good' at how it ensure its workforce behaves ethically and lawfully.
The results were published on Tuesday, 12th December as part of the latest report by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS).
The report, which is the latest in the round of police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy (or PEEL) inspections, focused on two crucial aspects of policing - legitimacy and leadership - with officers being praised for treating the people they serve with fairness and respect.
HM Inspector of Constabulary Mike Cunningham said: "Cheshire Constabulary is judged as good at how legitimately it keeps people safe and reduces crime. The constabulary shows clear leadership through its published values and the workforce understands and uses these values in public encounters. It has many established methods of seeking external challenge and feedback from the public to influence how it operates, but could improve its work with its independent advisory group.
"The constabulary's leadership maintain and develop the ethical culture within the constabulary. We found knowledge of ethical decision-making throughout the workforce. The constabulary has good systems for the public to make a complaint against the constabulary and complaints are investigated to a good standard, although some administrative procedures could be clarified.
"Cheshire Constabulary treats its workforce with fairness and respect. Its workforce can communicate with leaders and the leadership respond positively by making changes when possible, but it could further enhance its consultation processes."
Acting Chief Constable Janette McCormick said: "Police legitimacy is a critical element of policing and it is vital that our officers treat people with respect in the course of their duties and use their powers fairly.
"It's pleasing to see that this report recognises that our 'We're Here' commitments and 'Code of Ethics' are now enshrined at the heart of the organisation. It emphasises our commitment to the people we serve and ensures that all our officers and staff have a clear understanding of the values of the force."
David Keane, Police & Crime Commissioner for Cheshire said: "The legitimacy of any police force - making sure our local officers are treating people fairly and with respect and acting ethically and lawfully - is crucial in a democratic society. So, we're particularly pleased that the HMICFRS has recognised the Cheshire force as good for our efforts to continue to build ever stronger legitimacy and leadership.
"On behalf of our communities, our team and as an organisation we should continue to aspire to be leaders of ethical standards so I'm delighted that we've been recognised for our efforts to continue to champion this.
"I was particularly pleased to see that the Constabulary has been recognised for its work to seek better feedback from the public as this is something I'm particularly passionate about in my role. Honest feedback from the communities we serve is important in order for us to build further trust with our local communities and to truly champion their priorities."
One of the schemes highlighted by HMICFRS was the 'Independent Youth Commission', which was established by the Cheshire Police and Crime Commissioner last year to help ensure the Constabulary has a better understanding of the views of young people in Cheshire.
During the inspection, HMICFRS found that the Constabulary had many established methods of seeking feedback from the public, including the Independent Advisory Group.
Inspectors also commended the 'impressive' work that the Constabulary has done to improve the use of stop and search powers.
Acting CC McCormick said: "Despite the changing demands on policing tackling crime and antisocial behaviour remains our priority and Stop and search is a vital power for the police service to protect people and reduce and deter crime. In the past the Constabulary has been criticised for its use of stop and search powers, with HMICFRS highlighting it as an area requiring improvement.
"A lot of work has been done behind the scenes to ensure that this was addressed and it's extremely pleasing to see that we have now been commended for the work that we have carried out to ensure that all our officers fully understand this power and use it fairly and proportionately."