Wiltshire Police will soon launch a new recruitment drive, with a particular focus on recruiting female and ethnic minority officers. The force is interested in hearing from anyone considering a career in crime-fighting – but especially those who have traditionally been underrepresented in its ranks.
It is actively looking for people who want to “be the difference they want to see” in their communities, with applications opening Monday, April 25. This effort is part of the government’s commitment to recruit 20,000 additional police officers by March 2023.
Wiltshire Police have taken on 297 student police officers since 2019, with 140 more places available over the next 12 months. The three-year Uplift program will see 163 additional police officers take to the streets of the county, in addition to those needed to replace outgoing and retired.
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The Wiltshire Force has a dedicated Affirmative Action Team, which helps underrepresented people through the application process, so they can compete on an equal footing with other applicants. A report released by the force last year showed an 18% increase in the number of female police officers, from 344 in 2019 to 405 in 2021.
The progression of women through the ranks has also improved, with 17 policewomen passing the sergeant’s exam in 2021 compared to just one in 2020. Of four appointments to the rank of chief inspector in 2020, two were women.
Wiltshire Police were named the 36th most inclusive employer on the Top UK Inclusive Companies Index in December 2021. Currently around 2.5% of Wiltshire police are from ethnic minorities, compared to a Wiltshire population of around 5.5% of these communities.
The force is aiming to improve this statistic – efforts to this end resulted in 8% of applicants from ethnic minorities the last time officers were recruited. New officer cadets have the option of earning a degree – fully funded by the force – while undergoing a three-year training as part of the Police Officer Diploma apprenticeship.
Those who already hold a degree can take a two-year Graduate Diploma in Professional Policing Practice, combining theoretical learning with practical coursework and on-the-job training.
“Police is an incredible career”
Deputy Chief Constable Paul Mills said: ‘We always recruit on merit and suitability for this challenging role, but we are particularly keen to hear from those who may not have considered a career in policing and who come from an underrepresented group. Policing is an incredible career, and no two days are alike.
“Police face tough situations every day and have the opportunity to help people and really make a difference in their lives. It’s an incredibly fulfilling role that I wholeheartedly recommend, with plenty of opportunities to grow. and to specialize.
He added: “We are looking for resilient people whose first instinct is to help and support others – problem solvers and solution seekers, calm under pressure, who ask questions and are curious, but also approachable with a natural ability to connect with people from all walks of life. We are looking for people with a strong sense of community who bring a variety of skills and abilities.”
Full details of the roles required – along with rigorous match criteria – are available on the Police Officer Recruitment page on the Wiltshire Police Careers Website.
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