Cumbria Police Federation

'Exceptional Dedication' From Officers During Covid Pandemic

20 April 2021

THE independent inspectorate of policing has commended police officers, staff and volunteers for their “exceptional dedication and commitment” to keeping people safe during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire Services (HMICFRS) says the police service responded with “dedication and commitment” to the challenge of policing the pandemic.

Inspectors said: “Policing demonstrated its capacity for responding in an emergency.” They added that officers took “immediate and decisive” action to respond to the extreme circumstances of the pandemic.

Inspectors found that the fast-paced introduction and subsequent changes to new legislation affected some forces’ ability to produce timely and clear guidance for police officers and staff, which created difficulties for officers on the frontline.

The inspectorate acknowledged the criticism some forces faced for their interpretation of lockdown restrictions, stating they were “assured that police forces had learnt from these instances” and in general “did well” to maintain public trust.

Paul Williams, Chair of Cumbria Police Federation, said: “This report voices and evidences how remarkably resilient the police service has been during this pandemic and going forward into the future with some still very real and difficult challenges.

“The challenges and complexities this pandemic has presented is at a level never before seen in policing. All our colleagues in the policing family deserve full praise and recognition.

“New legislation has come in thick and fast and led to confusion on occasion, however there have been fantastic efforts to deliver this to the officers.

“In turn our colleagues have dealt with this very maturely and wisely, adapting to completely different ways of working and policing.

“I pleased that in Cumbria our chief officers involved the Federation and consulted closely from the outset – and remain doing so.

“Having had this insight it is apparent the tremendous task police forces have had to take on in employing completely new ways of working. The policing tone set and employed by our colleagues has been exceptional under some very stressful times.

“We have all been affected by this virus, having lost friends and family or suffering from the virus itself, yet my Cumbrian colleagues have remained stoic and professional throughout.

“I would like to see well deserved public praise and recognition for policing and how it has remained committed to keeping the public safe in such difficult times.”

Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary Matt Parr, commented: “Overall, the police rose to the challenge with dedication and commitment by taking immediate and decisive action to keep people safe and prevent crime, while also learning lessons from the rare occasions that they got it wrong.”

The HMICFRS report is based on an inspection of policing between March and November 2020. See it in full here: