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Police Federation

Detectives in Crisis

detectives in crisis logo of magnifying glass

‘Detectives in Crisis’ aims to raise awareness of the current state of detective policing in England and Wales by focusing on the Police Federation National Detectives’ Forum (PFNDF), highlighting the work and issues detectives face, and the trauma that comes with this role. 

It’s been long known that there is a tremendous strain on detectives with recruitment and retention issues being one of the main problems they are facing. We’re asking senior officers and PCCs to look at this role within their force area to better support officers and to try to redress the balance, while ensuring there is adequate support for the wellbeing of officers in this role.

Karen Stephens, Secretary of the Police Federation's National Detectives’ Forum:

“We cannot ignore that there is a crisis in detective policing. There is a serious demand and capacity imbalance in this high-pressure role, and I’ve seen the toll this is taking on colleagues. It says a lot when senior police figures are recognising the problem and openly supporting our campaign. We want forces, chief officers, police and crime commissioners, the College of Policing and the Government to look at the demands on detective policing and make changes to better support the welfare of colleagues.”

Glyn Pattinson, Chair of the Police Federation’s National Detectives’ Forum:

“We need to recognise the demands and personal impact that dealing with serious and disturbing crime has on these officers. My PFNDF colleagues and I want to bring to light the challenges detectives face; the unrelenting volume of serious and complex criminal investigations, with little or no respite.”

Detectives Demand, Capacity and Welfare Survey 2020 findings
Blog from Glyn (Chair): Odds against dwindling number of detectives 
Blog from Karen (Secretary): Proud of a job that's given me skills for life
Jared Sudworth (Deputy Chair): GMP Federation Detective Lead highlights recruitment and retention challenges (GMP website)
Blog from Gary Robinson (CoL): Seeing justice done makes being a detective incredible


Case studies

Detectives speak about the pressure of the job in a selection of video and case studies below:

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