A recruitment campaign by Police Now has been launched to attract the brightest and best graduates into policing amid reports that only one in 20 (five per cent) graduates ever consider a policing career.
Inspired by Teach First, Police Now is an innovative two-year training programme that places top graduates in the country’s most challenging communities where they can have the greatest positive impact working as neighbourhood police officers. It is not a fast-track scheme but a first step towards a policing career for graduates. On completion of the two years, the recruits can continue in their neighbourhood role, transition to another officer role or move beyond policing.
In its first year Police Now was piloted by the Metropolitan Police Service. In 2016 the programme expanded to seven forces, and this year it is expanding to almost half of all police forces across the country and tripling its intake to 250 participants.
The 2017 partner forces are:
- Avon and Somerset Constabulary
- Bedfordshire Police
- Cheshire Constabulary
- Essex Police
- Hampshire Constabulary
- Hertfordshire Constabulary
- Humberside Police
- Lancashire Constabulary
- Merseyside Police
- Metropolitan Police Service
- South Yorkshire Police
- Surrey Police
- Sussex Police
- Thames Valley Police
- Warwickshire Police
- West Mercia Police
- West Midlands Police
The new recruitment campaign – Change The Story – will give potential recruits the opportunity to take part in an interactive police simulation game, IMPACT.
The players are tasked with making a positive impact in six communities which each have a different issue such as prostitution, trafficking or drug dealing.
The scenarios are all real life case studies that Police Now officers have faced over the last year. Members of the public can also access IMPACT on the Police Now website.
Detective Chief Inspector David Spencer, chief executive and co-founder of Police Now, said: “We know that graduates are looking for real problem-solving experience, development opportunities and genuine responsibility early in their careers. The role of a neighbourhood police officer gives them all this while also giving them the opportunity to make a long-lasting positive impact in their local communities.
“Neighbourhood policing is a unique start to a graduate career. Whether our officers go on to long-term careers in the police or other professions, they will remain strong ambassadors for their force and the wider police service and will have more than repaid the investment that has been made in them.”
Each graduate on the scheme is responsible for cutting crime and increasing public confidence in the police in a specific neighbourhood. The day-to-day work varies according to the needs of the area but is aimed at achieving social change on the frontline, such as working with partners to reduce antisocial behaviour or gang crime.