The Forensic Science Regulator is a public appointee whose function is to ensure that the provision of forensic science services across the criminal justice system is subject to an appropriate regime of scienctific quality standards.
The regulator post
In response to a recommendation from the parliamentary science and technology committee, and following a period of consultation, it was decided to create a new post - the Forensic Science Regulator.
Although sponsored by the Home Office, the regulator is a public appointee and operates independently of the Home Office, on behalf of the criminal justice system as a whole. This independence allows the regulator to make unbiased recommendations and decisions.
Purpose of the Forensic Science Regulator
The regulator was appointed to provide independent advice on quality standards to the government and the criminal justice system.
This involves, but is not limited to:
- identifying the requirement for new and improved quality standards
- leading on the development of new standards where necessary
- providing advice and guidance so that service providers will be able to demonstrate compliance with common standards. For example, in procurement and in the courts
- ensuring that satisfactory arrangements exist to provide assurance and monitoring of the standards.
The regulator is supported by the Forensic Science Advisory Council (FSAC).
Meet the regulator
Meet the regulator, Andrew Rennison, who took up the post in February 2008.
Mr Rennison is the first regulator to be appointed to this office through the public appointments process.
Mr Rennison was a director with the Gambling Commission. For two years he helped to establish the commission as the regulator of the British gambling industry. This involved the development of policies, procedures and relationships with stakeholders, to pave the way for licensing, regulation, investigation and the prosecution of offences under the Gambling Act.
Prior to joining the Gambling Commission, Mr Rennison completed 30 years with the police in London and West Yorkshire.
He has worked at all ranks as a detective, including a period in charge of the scientific support functions in West Yorkshire and finishing as detective chief superintendent in charge of teams dealing with intelligence, organised crime, counter terrorism, child protection and covert policing.
Mr Rennison has a Master of Science degree in investigative psychology.