A national campaign has been launched by the Home Office today (Thursday 5 September) as part of the drive to recruit an extra 20,000 police officers across England and Wales, with West Mercia Police – covering Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Telford & Wrekin and Shropshire – set to receive hundreds of extra officers over the next three years.
While the allocation for West Mercia 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.
West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said: “The government’s pledge to recruit 20,000 new police officers is something communities and I welcome. I have already invested in an extra 215 officers who will all be in place the end of this year, so we look forward to receiving more to further bolster West Mercia Police and bring reassurance to communities.”
Martin Evans, Assistant Chief Constable of West Mercia Police, said: “Every part of our policing area should see a welcome boost as the new officers complete their training and go on patrol 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, will be able to make a visible and welcome difference to our communities.
“The final number of officers to be allocated to West Mercia will be agreed at the National Policing Board, but we expect a substantial increase in officers. This will significantly ease the pressure on our staff, enhance our visibility and with it increase public confidence, help us to reduce crime and improve our service to victims and ultimately further protect our communities from harm.
“Our focus remains on attracting and retaining the best applicants from a range of backgrounds to serve the public. A substantial uplift in officer numbers like this gives us the ideal opportunity to increase the diversity of our workforce. A diverse set of professional skills is needed to be a police officer, and policing benefits greatly from individuals with socially diverse backgrounds and experiences. With a representative and diverse workforce, we know that we can be more effective in improving the public’s confidence and trust in policing and be a more inclusive force.”
Issued: Thursday 5th September 2019