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GMP Federation

GMP Federation: Post-Incident Procedure is about looking after the welfare of officers

25 October 2019

Ensuring officers’ welfare needs are met is a key part of how Greater Manchester Police Federation helps them through a Post-Incident Procedure.

Being involved in a PIP prompted by death or serious injury in police care, can be an extremely stressful time for officers.

But Federation Conduct Leads Mike Peake and Mark Wood (pictured left) say the Federation is there to offer them the right advice and the right support.

Speaking at the PFEW PIP Seminar in Warwickshire, Mike said: “The process and procedure, it can be really stressful for officers and there’s little knowledge out there for frontline staff.

“Post-Incident Procedures are really stressful. What’s important is the information that’s needed to form the part and parcel of that investigation is done so in an open and transparent way and that officers get the protection they need in line with the APP.

It’s important that officers remember they are witnesses and not suspects first and foremost, said Mark.

“Our role is to ensure that the process, as is instigated, as identified as a PIP procedure, is followed in line with the APP,” he said.

“We ensure the officers have a clear understanding and it’s explained to them in no uncertain terms so that they actually understand what’s being asked of them during the process.

“It’s really important that we get them the best legal advice we can, whilst they also understand that they are a key police witness and they are not suspects.

“It doesn’t just stop with turning a solicitor out. It’s making sure that their welfare, above everything, is catered for, given that they’ve just been involved in what is more than likely a very traumatic and stressful situation.”

One of the key agenda items at the seminar was the length of time it can take for the IOPC to resolve investigations and Mark wants to see more steps being put in place to shorten case times.

“We’re encouraged that [IOPC Director] Mike Lockwood is trying to take his organisation into a more streamlined process, and in doing so bringing the timescales of investigations down,” he said.

“However, it takes a while to turn a tank around and I don’t think there are sufficient steps being put in place to actually achieve reducing timescales. The obvious mental health issues of a lengthy investigation don’t just impact on the officer themselves and their families.

“There’s also a victim and their family to take into consideration as well, and sometimes I think they lose that foresight.”

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