PCC Barry Coppinger with Chief Constable Richard Lewis and the Force's student officers
An accelerated recruitment drive will see more than 70 additional police officers join Cleveland Police ranks in the New Year.
The boost comes after Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger gave the go-ahead to fund additional frontline officers ahead of schedule.
The Force will recruit almost 200 officers in total during 2019/20 - creating an additional 72 police officer roles on top of current establishment.
Currently 95 students are completing their initial training and are expected to become operational in the New Year.
Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger and Chief Constable Richard Lewis visited the trainee officers at the Force’s Learning and Development Centre in Grangetown.
Mr Coppinger said: “Having campaigned for several years now for a reversal of the cuts to our policing, it’s terrific to visit the training centre and to see such numbers in training.
“Using additional government funding and through good financial management, we have been able to accelerate recruitment to get more officers on the streets as early as possible.
“We must take the government at its word with regard to the funding they have promised. A funding increase will allow us to continue recruitment and training throughout next year and increase officer numbers further.
“On behalf of Cleveland’s residents, I’m calling on them to increase investment in police services and reduce the burden on local taxpayers.”
The PCC also made clear that the Chief Constable must show how these resources will deliver improvements in services, especially against those areas for improvement raised in the police plan and by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS).
“It is for the Chief Constable to determine how these additional officers are deployed, though I have made clear the view shared by myself and the public that they must go into the areas with the most need.”
Chief Constable Richard Lewis said: “The Government’s announcement of additional officers on top of our current recruitment programme was very welcome as is the decision of the Police and Crime Commissioner to accelerate this process.
“As a Force we know policing success isn’t just about numbers, it’s much more complicated, and we are working hard to ensure that our officers are supported by appropriate working practices, planning and leadership.”
Posted on Monday 16th December 2019