Volunteers are not a substitute for fully trained officers

20 January 2016

Volunteers

Moves to substitute volunteers for fully trained police officers are ill-thought out and will not allow the Police service to best serve the public.

The Home Office today announced a package of reforms to transform the powers and roles of police staff and volunteers.

Steve White, chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, said: “We and our members understand the need for further police reform. However, the British public deserves and expects a properly resourced, professional and fully accountable police service to keep them safe in these dangerous times.

“We have seen no convincing arguments on the need to provide powers above or beyond those that already exist to police staff and volunteers.

“Having recently had the Government say ‘the police protect us and we are going to protect the police’, which clearly infers a need for greater resources, we appear to now be looking at a situation where they want to provide these resources on the cheap.

“Special constables and a significant army of volunteers up and down the country do sterling work, but they should not be a replacement for a sworn-in professional officers.”