A £100m contract for upgrades to the Staffordshire Police IT system has been handed to defence firm Boeing.
The partnership will see an upgrade to the force’s IT systems, police and crime commissioner Matthew Ellis said. Officers in the county have already been issued with body-worn cameras and mobile devices, which the force said would create time on the beat equivalent to employing 100 more officers.
First of its kind
It is understood to be the first IT partnership between a UK police force and a private firm and comes amid calls to merge emergency service infrastructure such as call centres in response to budget cuts.
Boeing, which supplies the British armed forces, beat 52 other companies to secure the contract, which could run for 10 years.
The contract comes after chief constable Jane Sawyers said officers had been hampered by outdated technology. Via this new deal the force hopes better information on criminals will help spot early warning signs to prevent crime.
The force’s police and crime commissioner (PCC) Matthew Ellis said the partnership would put the force at the “forefront of policing in the UK” and allow its officers to stay on the beat longer. He added: “As crime becomes more complex, with borders for criminals swept aside because of the internet and social media, it is essential that we ensure police have the right technology to tackle crime locally and wider.”
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