The aim of supporting diversity and valuing difference is to work with diverse communities to raise awareness of the careers in policing and share the opportunities in working for the force. The force strives to be representative of the communities it serves and while significant improvements have been made over the past few years there is still more to do, especially with applicants from a black background.
PC Ali, Positive Action Officer, said: “I recently passed my NVQ in policing and took the opportunity to move into the positive action role where I can help new officers and under-represented groups through the student journey, as well as encourage more officers from all backgrounds to join. I have just navigated transitioning into a policing role so I have first-hand and up to date knowledge that I can use to help others.
'I want to use my own experiences and highlight the positives of the police officer role to encourage others to start a career in policing. The negatives can often be widely publicised but there is so much more to celebrate. On top of knowing you make a difference and it being such a rewarding profession, it is one of the most secure jobs out there at a time of uncertainty for some industries. There are so many opportunities to learn, progress and change roles once you’re in which can take you from the dogs unit, to roads policing to being a detective in Major Crime. You can really make a lifelong career out of policing.
'There is a large population of diverse communities in Bedfordshire and it is vital we reflect that in our workforce. I want to help officers from under-represented backgrounds make the transition to police officer successfully. It is so important to understand the cultural and religious differences inside the force and when dealing with members of the public. I want to be there to help and to give back to the officers that helped me through it too.
'Whilst it is everyone’s responsibility to ensure our force is a place where difference is valued and people can be their whole selves, my role is focused on that all day, every day. My goal in this role is to make sure everyone knows who I am and know that they can come to me if they need any help. I also want to create initiatives and work with different communities and teams to make sure under-represented groups are getting the support they need and ultimately increase retention and the number of new officers coming to the force.'
Everyone at Bedfordshire Constabulary takes personal responsibility to help create an inclusive workplace, where police officers and staff respect one another, feel valued for their differences and can be themselves. We are committed to providing reasonable adjustments, wherever needed so everyone feels welcome and can flourish.
We recognise that you are unique and we want to use your uniqueness to help us to reflect the communities we serve.
We know that valuing the difference between people and the benefits that can be gained from those differences is what is going to take us from being good at what we do to being great. We are actively seeking to identify the widest pool of candidates from the widest mix of cultures, approaches and thinking.
To help increase our representation and improve our understanding of the barriers from the black community in joining the force please share any comments or feedback that you feel could help us in building relationships and increasing diversity.
We strive to be representative of the communities we serve and while we have made significant improvement there is still more to do, especially with applicants from a black background. We are keen to hear your thoughts around joining the policing role and any barriers you experience.
If you would like to discuss anything further with us, please email [email protected].