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SPECIAL MEASURES FOR THE SPECIAL CONSTABULARY

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'Extra Special' constables from six forces around the country have ...
'Extra Special' constables from six forces around the country have

been commended today in the prestigious Home Office Ferrers Trophy

awards. The annual award ceremony rewards and celebrates outstanding

Specials, with a new award this year for excellence in the

recruitment of Specials.

Special constables are a key element of the government's police

reform agenda and make a crucial contribution to high visibility

policing, crime reduction initiatives and intelligence-led policing

as well as the policing of major incidents and events.

Presenting the awards, minister for policing John Denham, unveiled a

series of measures to boost the retention and recruitment of Specials

and underline their vital role in a modern police service.

The new Special measures are:

-£300,000 for selected forces to act as 'Specials Champions'

- A new Mission Statement clearly setting out the valuable role

Specials play within the police service

- The first-ever national training programme for Specials, developed

by Centrex, the home of the National Centre for Policing

Excellence

- Home Office/ACPO good practice guidance on the management and

deployment of Specials

- Encouragement for employers to recognise and support those

employees who volunteer their time as Specials

Speaking at the awards ceremony, John Denham said:

'Special constables have a vital role to play in the future of

policing and are a key element of our police reform agenda. By giving

up their spare time, they bring to police work their skill,

experience and often local knowledge for the benefits of the

communities they serve. They do make a real difference.

'Some forces are better than others at recruiting and retaining

Specials. I intend to identify a number of forces to act as 'Specials

Champions' and have set aside£300,000 to support them. Backed up

with the good practice guidance we will be issuing to all forces, we

are working hard to bring the standards of all forces up to those of

the best.

'Specials, along with police officers, are the only members of the

extended police family with full police powers and carry out an

immensely diverse range of duties. The new Mission Statement makes

clear that the modern Special does more than patrol 'fetes and

football'. And the new national training programme will equip

Specials with the skills and training they need to carry out the full

range of duties.

'Volunteering also brings rewards to the workplace, which is why we

are working with employers and asking them to consider giving their

employees paid leave to work as Specials. Business can't do this

alone, which is why the home secretary and the chancellor will

publish a joint discussion paper on fiscal and other changes we can

make to promote community service.'

The 2002 winner of the Ferrers Trophy is Michael Bradley, a Special

Constable with the Avon and Somerset police.

Congratulating Michael Bradley, John Dennham said:

'Michael Bradley is a shining example of a Special Constable.He

plays a vital role in the policing of his community and has

demonstrated enormous commitment and professionalism over a sustained

period of time. He's been involved in an incredibly diverse range of

work, from arresting a violent criminal armed with a knife, to

tackling anti-social behaviour and under-age drinking and smoking.

'Michael has outstanding organisational and communication skills; he

has demonstrated time and again that he can keep a cool head in high

pressure situations and juggle his voluntary role, a full time job

and also care for his young family as well! He is a highly motivated

and dedicated Special constable and an exceptionally worthy winner of

this year's trophy.'

Notes

The chancellor of the exchequer said in his April 2002 Budget

speech:

'. following this period when we have been so powerfully reminded

of the enduring contribution of public service by our older

generation, we are determined to give more opportunities for

community service especially among young people. Later this year

the Home Secretary and I will publish a joint discussion document

on fiscal and other changes we can make to promote volunteering and

community.'

The Home Office/ACPO working group set up in March 2002 will be

disseminating good practice guidance on the management and

deployment of Special Constables by the end of the year.

The Special Constabulary is a voluntary body drawn mainly from

the community served by each local force. Specials have full police

powers and carry out a range of police work under the supervision,

and supported by, regular officers. Specials give a few hours each

week, typically evenings and weekends.

The number of serving specials was 12,068 at 30 September 2001.

Specials have a key role in the reduction of crime and fear of

crime and make a vital contribution to addressing local policing

problems.

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