Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Seccombe has used National Volunteer’s Week (June 1-7) to praise the work of the many people who give their time to assist policing and community safety.
He said volunteers were “invaluable to keeping communities safe” and had helped the county across an immensely difficult year in which close community spirit was both needed and more evident than ever.
Mr Seccombe said: “Community spirit has been extremely important over the past year and will continue to be an extremely important factor in ensuring that Warwickshire recovers strongly from the pandemic. The role of volunteers in this must not be overlooked and they will continue to be invaluable in keeping communities safe.
“In policing we have volunteers across a wide range of roles, perhaps most visibly as members of the Special Constabulary, who have given impressive numbers of hours to work alongside their regular colleagues, both on patrol, in Safer Neighbourhood Teams and other specialist roles.
“There are also many people who give their time through the Citizens in Policing programme to help with a wide range of tasks, for example helping Safer Neighbourhood Teams with newsletters and administration, while we also encourage the next generation into policing through the Police Cadets scheme.
“My office also relies on volunteers to help me in my role in scrutinising the work of the police and within the wider criminal justice system. The members of our Independent Custody Visiting Scheme all give their time to assist me in ensuring the welfare of detainees in our police custody suites, while the Joint Audit and Standards Committee members do sterling work in helping me hold the force to account on ethical and governance issues.”
There are opportunities for more people to become involved in volunteering. A new Appropriate Adults Scheme is being established by the Commissioner to support vulnerable adults who come into contact with the police, helping safeguard their interests, rights, entitlements and welfare.
There are also vacancies within the Independent Custody Visiting Scheme and the Commissioner has pledged to see an expansion of the Special Constabulary.
He adds: “As someone who spent 25 years serving with the Army Reserve, I fully understand and support the volunteering ethos. That’s why I want to see more of our citizens becoming involved. As well as giving back to the local community, volunteering can provide new skills and experiences which can be useful in other arenas, while the friendships and connections made can last a lifetime.
“I really want to encourage people from all backgrounds to consider what they might be able to do to help Warwickshire communities and I hope that Volunteers Week helps to highlight the many ways to get involved.”
For more information about becoming an Independent Custody Visitor or an Appropriate Adult, visit the Jobs and Opportunities page on the OPCC website.
Anyone who is interested in joining the Special Constabulary is invited to find out more by joining a national on-line taster evening on Monday 14 June at 6.30pm. Click here to book your space.