Northern Ireland news

PSNI refuse to reveal how much Capita contract is worth

Capita are to provide control room services the PSNI.

CONTROVERSIAL public sector contractor Capita has been awarded a contract to provide command and control systems to the PSNI.

However, neither the PSNI nor Capita would reveal how much public money the contract was worth.

The company announced yesterday it had been awarded a contract to deliver its command and control system for contact centre and control room operations across the PSNI's three regional contact management centres.

The contract is for an initial seven-year term with incremental options to extend it to 17 years.

The company said its ControlWorks system will help deliver "operational benefits", including the ability to assess and prioritise demand and risk at each point of contact with the public and enable the PSNI to "manage all its operations from a single viewpoint".

Deputy Chief Constable Drew Harris welcomed the move saying "technology plays a part in everything we do as a police service".

"It is vital that we invest in future-proof solutions that enable us to provide effective and efficient services 24 hours a day in Northern Ireland.

"Capita's ControlWorks solution will help us to do exactly that, supporting the way we respond to our communities’ needs and adapting to new and evolving policing challenges as they present themselves", he added.

George Greig, Director, Capita Secure Solutions and Services, said: "It was clear from the start of our collaboration with PSNI that they understood the importance of having innovative solutions in place to help coordinate resources, make highly-informed decisions and rapidly communicate these to police officers and the public."

In October last year the outsourcing group announced the appointment of a new chief executive Jon Lewis to help turn around the fortunes of the company.

The new boss slashed profit forecasts and set out plans to raise cash to avoid the same fate as collapsed rival Carillion resulting in 40 per cent being wiped off the company's market value.

Carillion collapsed under a pile of debt earlier this year.

Capita, which provides IT services to companies and governments, said afterwards it needed a complete overhaul and to 'retrench'.

In January the information commissioner ordered the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in Britain to release a report into Capita and Atos.

The two outsourcing companies are paid hundreds of millions of pounds to carry out personal independence payment (PIP) assessments,

In April last year Channel 4's Dispatches programme went undercover in Capita. An investigator posed as a trainee disability assessor to see how the PIP assessments were conducted leading to widespread criticism of the company's practices.

When asked yesterday a spokesperson for Capita said they could not comment on how much the contract was worth.

The PSNI also would not comment on the value of the contract when asked.

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