Hampshire Constabulary has signed up to the scheme, which allows members of the public to gain an insight into how police officers consider and apply their use of stop and search powers.
The scheme was designed to provide the opportunity for people who are not police officers to experience the challenges of operational policing first hand. It may be of particular relevance for those interested in joining the police or those who feel they would like a better understanding of the stop and search process.
Anyone can apply to participate in the scheme. It is aimed at those aged 18 or over, however district commanders can approve for someone aged 13 or over to attend as long as the child has parental consent.
The scheme builds on the success of the familiarisation days in Portsmouth, which were introduced as part of the community engagement strategy in the city. Members of the community were invited to visit and tour the station, meet and chat with officers and go out on patrol. It helped to build trust and confidence in policing, breaking down barriers and encouraged an interest in joining the extended police family.
ACC Sara Glen, head of local policing, said: “We are committed in Hampshire to ensuring we have an external perspective and community scrutiny of our policing tactics. We police with the consent of the public we serve and the community’s view of this tactic is really important to us.”
“This scheme gives us a real opportunity for anyone interested in understanding the role of a police officer to go out on patrol and get a first hand insight into the challenges officers face.”
“Although it has been set up as part of the Home Office Best Use of Stop and Search scheme, we see it offering something much broader than just seeing the use of these powers as there is no guarantee it will be used by officers while out on patrol.”
“We hope it will give a much wider understanding of the role of a police officer and for those interested in learning more about policing in the community, that it will demonstrate first hand that we do not take our powers lightly and that the communities of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight can have trust and confidence in their local officers.”
Anyone interested in taking part in the scheme can apply in writing to their district commander via the ACC Local Policing Office or can email, along with a copy of their ID, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about the scheme, please click here.