90 days from today is Sun, 22 September 2024

Devon & Cornwall Police Federation

Christmas and New Year Message for Members from Andy Berry, Chair of Devon and Cornwall Police Federation

22 December 2022

Christmas and New Year Message for Members from Andy Berry, Chair of Devon and Cornwall Police Federation.

Christmas and New Year are no holiday for many police officers.

For many officers their time for celebration will be limited as they will be working to keep the public safe.  I also know that Christmas brings out the best in people but also the worse and I know the challenges that this will bring.  To all my friends and colleagues please stay safe.

2022 has been another tough year for everyone in Devon & Cornwall police. 

At home we have worried as everything we do gets more expensive and at work the pressure of the ever-increasing demand from the public makes everyone busier and for many, stressed. 

Of course some of the additional pressure towards the end of this year has been internal dealing with the criticism levelled at the force by the HMICFRS and implementing a new IT system. Many of you will know that I took the unusual step of writing to the Temporary Chief Constable to raise concerns about the impact on officers across the force.  

I’m not despondent though, the HMICFRS also congratulated the force for being the only one in the country to undertake a cultural audit. This was a brave thing to do. The results weren’t pretty. Identifying, for instance, an atmosphere of fear within the force, but instead of burying the findings the force has already started to roll out a training programme to try to address these concerns. 

A force wide message in the past week implores officers to use the NDM and take decisions, perhaps brave ones, and promises that they will be supported. I hope that these things are a starting point to, again, make Devon & Cornwall Police a great place to work where officers are given the tools, training and time to do a great job for the public. 

Of course we have a new Chief Constable, Will Kerr OBE, starting over the Christmas period and I know that he understands not only our internal challenges but also the challenges policing faces due to other areas of the public sector struggling to deliver their own services. 

My promise for 2023 to my members is to work closely with Mr Kerr to ensure, as a compassionate leader, he understands what they need from him to deliver great policing.

So as a nod to the forces cultural survey and using the words of Yoko & John may I wish you-

A very merry Christmas

And a happy new year

Let’s hope it’s a good one

Without any fear