David Spencer, Police Now CEO and co-founder
Today, the Home Office announced that it is providing funding for Police Now to develop a detective entry programme. There exists a well-publicised national shortage of detectives, which is being addressed by a broad range of different interventions, mostly from inside the police service itself. Across the country there are already thousands of excellent detectives doing brilliant work every day, and the programme Police Now develops will build on their expertise to ensure that new detectives deliver the best possible results for the public.
Police Now has a successful track record of bringing bright, diverse, public-spirited people into policing and working with police force partners to train and develop them. With the support of their forces, police officers, staff colleagues and Police Now, our existing neighbourhood participants have collectively performed extremely well. They are excellent police officers, making a positive impact in the communities they serve.
A Police Now detective programme will – as with the neighbourhood programme – be aligned to the Police Now mission of transforming communities by increasing public confidence in the police and reducing crime. With the benefit of running both programmes, we will actively be able to consider the links between both programmes to ensure shared learning and best practice.
We will take the most successful elements of the Police Now neighbourhood programme and translate these to the detective role. This will include the innovations around the way participants are recruited, trained and developed, such as the initial high-intensity training period and subsequent two-year developmental programme to improve their professional skills and the impact they make on the frontline.
At present, we intend that the Detective Programme to be positioned as a two-year graduate programme, available to graduates with at least two years’ post-university work experience and subject to standard police entry criteria.
As a former Detective myself, I understand the positive impact that detectives can have on reducing crime, increasing confidence in communities and protecting the most vulnerable in society. Therefore, I am determined that we should develop a programme that not only attracts diverse and brilliant individuals who may not have thought about policing before, but that we equip participants with all the skills they need to be excellent detectives.
I am grateful to the Home Office and police forces for their ongoing support, without which Police Now would not exist, and look forward to working with them and other key policing stakeholders to make this new programme a reality.