56 new officers welcomed to Essex Police
Today, Friday 8th October, 56 new police officers took part in a passing out parade at Essex Police headquarters.
The parade was the first opportunity for families and friends to join the event since March 2020. In spite of restrictions imposed over the last 18 months, 507 men and women have been trained and have qualified as new officers, that’s the equivalent of more than one officer a day for the past 16 months.
“Working alongside national government we have significantly increased the investment in policing over the last five years. We are getting stronger and better equipped than ever before and as a result are better able to make a difference for our communities.
“These are difficult times for policing, and we know that policing nationally needs to do more. It needs to do more to support women and girls, to rebuild confidence and trust. It needs to be better at working with our communities to get crime down.
“We build confidence through every interaction we have, every contact, every conversation and every person we help. We build confidence by hard work, professionalism and dedication.
“In my role, as your Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, I am committed to ensuring that Essex Police has the support, resources, systems and processes in place to rebuild the bond of trust that it has with the public. I am committed to ensuring we are accountable to the public for our behaviour, our culture and our activity. It is up to each of us in our roles to make a difference.”
This year, in excess of 80 County Lines have been closed down in Essex and Thurrock, with more than 13kg of drugs with a street value of £536,000 and more than £255,000 in cash seized.
The new officers, who will join their teams from next week, are the latest people to join Essex Police, which is due to grow to more than 3,500 (excluding essential police support staff and volunteers) by the end of next month.
They were welcomed into the force by Chief Constable Ben-Julian Harrington and guests including Policing Minister Kit Malthouse MP, Police Fire and Crime Commissioner Roger Hirst, and Bishop of Colchester Roger Morris.
In the past 12 months, the number of female Essex Police officers has reached a record high, with 1,246 women working to protect and serve the people of Essex. More than 35% of officers in the county are women, and the force aims to increase this figure in the coming year.
The Chief Constable told new colleagues that their families should be proud they had come forward to catch criminals and keep the people of Essex safe.
The Passing Out Parade in Essex comes at a time when policing has been rightly challenged as a result of events across the UK.
Chief Constable Ben-Julian Constable told the new recruits, and their families:
“I wish to be clear that as Chief Constable I accept the challenge to rebuild the bond of trust between the police – the men and women here – and all those who we are here to protect.
“I accept this challenge because when I see your commitment and when I see the support of your loved ones here today, I feel proud and privileged to be your Chief Constable and because I know that you are with me. I will also make a promise to you and to the people of Essex.
“I promise that as you carry out your duties insofar as they are lawful, necessary and proportionate, you will have my unwavering support. I promise your families that as colleagues, we will look after each other.
“And I promise that we will not rest until our county and our society is a safe place for every man, every woman and every child who lives here.”
Policing Minister Kit Malthouse said:
“I am delighted to see these women and men starting new careers at Essex Police – they join the ranks of nearly 10,000 others across the country who have been hired as part of our flagship police recruitment campaign, motivated by the desire to make a difference and protect the public from harm.
“The police workforce is changing – we now have more female police officers in England and Wales than ever before and the number of ethnic minority police officers is the highest on record – and we want to see police forces becoming even more representative of the communities they serve.
“I want to congratulate and thank these new recruits who join hard working, committed police officers up and down the country, who feel passionately about the job they do and keeping the public safe.”