18 August 2019
Today the Home Secretary has said that the safety of police officers is her “first priority”.
Writing in a Sunday paper Priti Patel has pledged to provide officers with the powers and tools they need to keep themselves and the public safe; making reference to access to Taser, recruiting more police officers, tougher sentences for those who assault officers as well as committing to accelerating the introduction of a Police Covenant – all things the Police Federation of England and Wales (PFEW) has been campaigning for.
Reacting to the comments, PFEW National Chair John Apter said: “The tragic events of this week, which followed a series of violent attacks on officers, has brought in to sharp focus the very real dangers my brave, hard-working colleagues face day in day out.
“Police officers go to work and do their duty to keep our communities safe and protect the public and it is only right that they themselves have the greatest support and the best protections available.
“Today the Home Secretary has spoken out and made some very positive comments around her, and the Prime Minister’s, commitment to protecting police officers. Now we need to see these promises become a reality,” he said.
The Home Secretary’s comments reflect much PFEW’s work to improve officer welfare and safety.
Mr Apter Continued: “Our priority has been highlighting the unacceptable lack of protection for officers, and campaigning and lobbying the Government hard to force those with the power to do so to make these crucial improvements.
“We have put pressure on them, and they are clearly acting – something I very much welcome. It is a certainly a refreshing change from the attitude of the previous Prime Minister.
“But warm words are not enough. Theses promises must result in a tangible difference to the lives of my colleagues. That is vital,” he said.
Mr Apter will also be seeking reassurance that these changes will be backed by the significant financial investment the service so desperately needs when he meets with Ms Patel this week.
“I am meeting with the Home Secretary over the coming days and I will be pressing her for details of when, and how, she is going to action the pledges she has made today in order to demonstrate that police officer safety really is her priority,” he concluded.