Photograph: Home Office / Police Professional
A roundtable event took place on 16th January in Westminster chaired by policing Minister Nick Hurd focusing on police wellbeing and how the Government can assist police chiefs to manage the welfare of their officers.
National Lead for wellbeing for the police service, Chief Constable Andy Rhodes, who is behind Oscar Kilo, attended the event along with representatives from Public Health England, Police Federation and several police charities including the Police Dependents Trust and MIND Bluelight.
Mr Hurd said: “Policing can be a very demanding job. Officers have demonstrated extraordinary courage and fortitude in the face of major challenges over the past year, including terrorist attacks and the Grenfell Tower fire. I am grateful to them for their tireless work and dedication to duty.
“It is imperative that policing provides excellent support to its officers and staff – which is why I’m keen to listen to those with the most experience on how to do this best.
“The Government takes the issue of police welfare very seriously, and this event will provide an opportunity to review progress so far and put plans in place for the future.”
In July 2017, Home Secretary Amber Rudd awarded £7.5 million over three years from the Police Transformation Fund to pilot a dedicated national service to enhance mental health advice and welfare support in the police service.
If the trial is successful, it will be rolled out to all 43 forces between 2018 and 2020.
Mr Rhodes and Dr Ian Hesketh from the College of Policing have also led the design of the Blue Light Wellbeing Framework – the first ever sector-specific self-assessment management tool. This is hosted on Oscar Kilo which has been designed to be the home of the evidence base and best practice for emergency services wellbeing and allows forces to complete online self-assessments of their welfare provision
Mr Rhodes said: “Our police officers and staff work in a physically and emotionally demanding environment, putting their bodies and their minds on the line 24/7 to keep us safe.
“This roundtable sends out a clear message that we are relentless in our commitment to provide the world-class welfare support police need to deliver a high quality service for the public.
“The event brings together experts and national leads to review progress and agree priorities for the future, including significant investment from the Police Transformation Fund. This investment will enable us to accelerate our efforts and significantly step up our activity over the coming years.”
A short video by the Home Office of MP Nick Hurd summarising the event
— Home Office (@ukhomeoffice) January 16, 2018