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Gwent Police Federation

Officer numbers up as recruitment programme reaches final stages

27 January 2023

The Police Uplift Programme helped officer numbers at Gwent Police rise by 47 in 2022, according to a new Home Office report. 

Figures released this week as part of a quarterly update on the Police Uplift Programme showed the Force had 1,480 officers in December compared with 1,433 last January.

The improved headcount was welcomed by Gwent Police Federation chair Matthew Candy.

He said: “Any increase in officers is to be welcomed and it is great to see the number going up instead of going down. 

“We accept that the uplift programme is effectively bringing the figures back up the pre-austerity levels of 12 years ago but it is nevertheless an important step forward in trying to improve the service we deliver.

“The challenge now faced by the Force is making sure those young officers feel safe, supported and secure in their new roles and are given effective training and the proper resources to do their jobs.

“Above all, police officers want to feel valued and respected for the difficult work they do.” 

The Police Uplift Programme was a 2019 Government manifesto pledge.

Nationwide figures revealed that 16,753 new officers had now been recruited from funding for the scheme - 84 per cent of the target of 20,000 recruits by March.

There are now 145,658 officers in the 43 territorial police forces in England and Wales. 

A Home Office spokesman said: “The Police Uplift Programme’s primary focus is to support the recruitment of officers across the 43 forces.

“Recruitment across each force is the responsibility of an operationally independent chief constable and held to account by a locally elected Police and Crime Commissioner.

“The Government has pledged to invest more £3.5 billion in policing between 2020 and 2023 in order to recruit 20,000 additional officers.

“Additional officers will support forces in tackling crime and making communities safer.

“The Police Uplift Programme is one of a range of initiatives the Government has implemented to support policing.”