28 days from today is Sat, 15 June 2024

Hampshire Police Federation

Hampshire Police Federation Chair: Officers get criticised for doing too much and also for doing too little. They can’t win.

11 January 2021

Hampshire Police Federation Chair Zoe Wakefield has been highlighting the challenges Lockdown 3 is bringing to policing and the reality of what officers are facing as they strive to play their part in keeping people safe from Covid-19.

Zoe said: “Police officers would like to be able to focus on ‘normal’ policing but understand that they have an important role in the pandemic. Officers are having to learn new legislation literally on the day it is enacted.

“The laws are changing frequently and what is guidance at one time or in one area, is unlawful in another. It is not helpful when the law is not specific. For example when it refers to remaining ‘local’ for exercise without any further detail on what local means.

“This can be interpreted in many different ways which creates anger and confusion. Officers get criticised for doing too much and also for doing too little. They can’t win.

“Officers across the country continue to put themselves at risk in order to keep the public safe. Police officers cannot always maintain social distancing. The anti-lockdown protests in London on the weekend were sadly a good example. Officers are being assaulted and spat at on a daily basis.

“Officers are very worried about contracting the virus and taking it home to their families. They are also worried about passing it onto innocent members of the public who they come into contact with.

“Police officers need to be given priority for the vaccine. Sickness rates amongst officers are rising and the public need to have enough police officers available to keep them safe.

“The majority of the public have been and continue to abide by the rules. We all need to work together to take the pressure off our NHS and get through this.”