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GMP Federation

Government cuts & workloads fuel a 'crisis' in detective policing

14 March 2018

Nearly three quarters of Detectives say they are unable to provide the service victims need.

Cuts and an increased workload are partly to blame says the Police Federation of England and Wales which is warning of a crisis in detective policing.

It’s launched a new campaign this week aimed at raising awareness of the pressures detectives are facing.

In last year’s national detective survey 73% of respondents said they were not able to provide the service victims need ‘most or all of the time.’

More than half belief that cuts have had a negative impact on team morale, while a quarter stated that they had impacted on physical and mental health.

Fatigue and stress are other reported symptoms of the cuts and more than three quarters of the 7,800 respondents said that workloads were too high for them to cope over the past year.

“There is a crisis in detective policing,” says Karen Stephens, Secretary of the Police Federation’s National Detectives’ Forum, “and this is supported by the high number of officers who took part in the survey.

“There is a serious demand and capacity imbalance in this high-pressure role and I have seen the toll this is taking on colleagues.”

Over the coming months, the campaign will see the Federation release a series of case studies to highlight the stress that comes with being a detective, the types of investigative work that officers get involved with and the detrimental impact that a lack of resources is having.

“It says a lot when senior police figures are recognising the problem and supporting the campaign,” adds Karen.

“We want forces, chief officers, Police and Crime Commissioners, the College of Policing and the Government to look at the demands on detective policing and make changes to better support the welfare of our colleagues.”

South Wales Police Chief Constable and NPCC Lead for Investigator Resilience, Matt Jukes, former Merseyside Detective Chief Superintendent Brian McNeill and former Derbyshire Constabulary Chief Constable Mick Creedon are all backing the campaign.

Former Chief Constable Creedon says public protection is at stake.

“The reduction in staff and officer numbers and the lack officers working in this area of policing will impact on the collective ability of the police service to protect the public.

“I commend the Police Federation of England and Wales for launching this campaign and will do whatever I can to support the valuable work of the Federation and the role of detective.”

For more information visit www.polfed.org or get involved on Twitter using #DetectivesInCrisis

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January 2019
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