Warwickshire set to benefit as national campaign launched to recruit 20,000 extra police officers
A national campaign has been launched by the Home Office today (5 September) as part of the drive to recruit an extra 20,000 police officers across England and Wales – with Warwickshire set to receive hundreds of extra officers over the next three years.
While the allocation for Warwickshire Police is set to be confirmed by ministers at the Home Office, the force is working closely with the National Police Chiefs’ Council, the College of Policing and the Home Office to deliver on the commitment. The Chancellor yesterday announced funding to support the recruitment of a first wave of up to 6,000 officers, who will be shared among the 43 forces in England and Wales. The remaining 14,000 will be recruited in the following two years, backed by government funding, and will be additional to officers hired to fill existing vacancies.
The campaign will appear on billboards and digital displays at locations across England and Wales, including at shopping centres and railway stations, as well as in a radio advertisement, with new recruits urged to join the police and “Be a force for all”. The campaign was developed by the Home Office in partnership with the police and features serving police officers. A new website has also been set up to provide potential recruits with more information and direct them to the recruitment pages of local police forces.
A second phase of advertising is planned for the new year.
Alex Franklin-Smith, Assistant Chief Constable of Warwickshire Police, said: “We welcome this net increase of officers, which will accelerate our plans to improve diversity in policing and the new training for recruits to help us meet the demands and complexities of modern policing. This is a generational opportunity which will ease the pressure on our people, help us to reduce crime and improve outcomes for victims.
“Our focus is on attracting and retaining the best staff from a range of backgrounds to serve the public. A substantial uplift in officer numbers like this gives us a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to increase the diversity of our workforce. We already have plans in place to make sure we’re appealing to women, people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds and other underrepresented groups. The work already being done by the force on diversity and inclusion will help accelerate our plans.
“The final number of officers to be allocated to Warwickshire will be agreed at the National Policing Board, but we expect a substantial increase in officers. This will allow us to ease the intense pressure on our current workforce, increase public confidence in policing, secure better outcomes for victims and reduce serious crime.”
Teams at Warwickshire Police are currently working through the detail and practical implications. Plans will be developed for attracting and retaining the best staff, assessing and training them, and ensuring they have the right support and supervision. They will also look at logistical issues such as vetting, buildings and vehicles.
Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Seccombe said: “It’s really welcome news that the national recruitment campaign has been launched, with confirmation of the funding being in place to recruit the initial 6,000 officers nationally this year, rising to 20,000 over three years, an unprecedented increase.
“This year has already seen Warwickshire Police break records for recruitment, thanks to the funding I have provided through the Council Tax increases, which has seen more than 150 student officers recruited alongside an additional 40 experienced officers, with more still to come over the next month. This gives me good confidence that, combined with the right level of funding and support from the Government, Warwickshire Police will be able to fully recruit its share of the national uplift. This will leave Warwickshire Police with police officer numbers not seen in almost a decade and towards historic high levels for the force.
“Every part of Warwickshire should see a welcome boost as these new officers complete their training and go on patrol across the county or begin their work to solve problems in local communities. The new recruits, together with the highly-dedicated police officers, PCSOs, Special Constables, police staff and volunteers that we already have in Warwickshire will be able to make a visible and welcome difference to communities.”
To be one of the 20,000 new police officers by joining Warwickshire Police, apply today at www.warwickshire.police.uk/policerecruitment.