Flying the flag for women in policing

22 August 2015

Women police officers from over 30 countries will parade through Cardiff tomorrow, to mark the centenary of the International Association of Women in Police (IAWP).

It will be a double celebration for women officers in the UK as representatives from the service will also march to commemorate 100 years of women in policing.

Supported by the Police Federation of England and Wales, the parade marks the start of the IAWP’s 53rd annual training conference.  

Constable Hayley Aley from Warwickshire Police will lead the parade on behalf of the Police Federation of England and Wales, alongside the IAWP and South Wales Police.

Hayley Aley, who is also chair of the Federation’s equality sub-committee and national women’s reserve representative, said:  “It is an honour to lead the Parade of Nations on behalf of women officers throughout the country.  This is a special event which helps showcase the significant contribution women officers make to the service worldwide.  

“It is a privilege to be a part of it, personally, on behalf of the Federation and for Warwickshire Police.”

Chief Constable Martin Jelley, of Warwickshire Police, said: "It is great to see so many women doing such fantastic work within the police, not only in our local communities but nationally and internationally. I am incredibly proud and delighted that a Warwickshire police officer has been given the opportunity and responsibility of being the Standard Bearer for the Parade of Nations at the IAWP conference."

The Police Federation of England and Wales is the representative voice for 123,000 rank and file officers, of which 28% are women.

Jayne Willetts, who is chair of the constables and secretary of the Federation’s equality sub-committee, said:   “The status of female officers in the service has changed quite significantly since I joined 23 years ago, and this event showcases just how far we have come in the last century.

“I am proud to be a female constable and representative, not only for the service but also for the Federation, in terms of the value it brings to all rank and file officers.”

Carolyn Davies, national women’s reserve lead for the Federation, said:  “Women bring great value to the service and this weekend brings recognition to that on an international stage.

“Our job is to ensure that the voices of women officers are heard and that their significant and different needs are supported.  

“Women have come a long way but there is still work to do, especially when it comes to specialist roles.

“As long as women are different, the service will always need reserve seat representation.”

Representatives from the Federation will present some of its work in practice on Tuesday 25 August, 11am – 12.30pm.

This is the third time that the UK has hosted the conference, which sets to enhance skills through professional development, training, mentoring, networking, peer support and recognition.

The IAWP conference takes place at the Motorpoint Arena, Sunday 23 August – Thursday 27 August 2015.  You can keep up-to-date with the event by following @IAWP2015 on twitter. Useful hashtags are #IAWP2015 and #polfedwomen15More information is available here.