Derbyshire Police Federation

Nothing is more important than wellbeing, says Federation

10 September 2021

Derbyshire Police Federation has emphasised the importance of preventative care for officer wellbeing as a new Police Federation of England and Wales (PFEW) pilot scheme aims to help Federation representatives balance their full-time role with their Federation responsibilities.

The scheme helps reps identify potential stressors and offer helpful, practical advice to ensure they are coping with the demands of the role.

Derbyshire Police Federation chair Tony Wetton said, “Nothing is more important than wellbeing – if you don’t feel right, you can’t do your job effectively. And, of course, the sooner we can help people get the help they need, the better.

“We must intervene before officers reach crisis point. This scheme is a great step in the right direction.

“It’s important to remember, though, that the issues which have such a huge impact on officers’ mental and physical wellbeing are exacerbated by chronic underfunding and under-resourcing, problems made worse by Covid-19.  The sense of this being a Government with a complete lack of respect and appreciation for the work police officers do compounds that impact.  After a year in which they were ignored in terms of priority for the vaccination to protect them from the risks presented by Covid-19 and suffering a disgraceful freeze to their pay, it is easy to see why they feel so undervalued by politicians who are quick with empty platitudes but sadly lacking when it is time to show real support.

“Lack of officers is why members are attending multiple traumatic incidents in a row, and lack of funding is why they don’t have spaces to rest and recharge during difficult shifts.  This enormous stress is clearly exacerbated in Federation representatives who are performing their important role in addition to their policing day job.

“The Government, in particular the Home Office and the Treasury which increasingly appear to be hiding behind them, needs to stop putting the public at risk through the decisions it makes in relation to policing.”

At the Emergency Services Show held at the NEC in Birmingham this week, national Federation wellbeing chair Hayley Aley suggested forces use a similar method to the Federation pilot to track the number of incidents officers have attended and use it to offer practical support to those who may be struggling.

“If the organisation could work with that information, take the time to speak to the officer, check in and give them that support we would be pre-emptively tackling the problem,” she said.

 

 

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