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1 December 2020
This time of year can be challenging for many and it is even more difficult to see light at the end of the tunnel during a global pandemic.
This month we want to encourage officers who are struggling to make ends meet, to seek support and realise that there is help available.
I have been there myself – as a student officer I was a single-parent and had sleepless nights worrying about money. If only I knew then what I know now. There is no shame in admitting to others that times are hard – asking for help and support is the most positive thing you can do, not least for your own mental health and wellbeing.
Money worries can eat away at you – cause you to feel depressed, isolated, destroy your confidence, relationships at work and home, interfere with your family time – the list goes on.
We want to help you manage your financial stress and we will be shining the light on where to get help and support – keep an eye on our website, social media channels and look out for the next edition of POLICE magazine.
Some officers who have struggled financially have offered to share their stories and we will be publishing these this month. I have no doubt that their experiences will resonate with many - inspire and give hope that there is a way through these difficult times.
Being part of the police family means that you are eligible for a host of discounts – we will be shouting about some outstanding deals, such as those available via the Blue Light Card.
You may need some help managing your monthly income and outgoings and there are organisations that can provide the tools to put a plan in place around manageable monthly repayments, leaving you with enough to live on each month. You can find more information on our Financial Wellbeing pages.
Many officers worry about admitting that they are in financial difficulty for fear of jeopardising their job. The truth is that declaring your financial situation to professional standards can alleviate that vulnerability – again a positive step towards getting back on track. And don’t forget that you can reach out to your local rep or branch board to support you with that too.
Talking and sharing the challenges you face helps everyone – first and foremost yourself and your family. Our Hear ‘Man Up’, Think ‘Man Down’ campaign, calls for people to talk more openly about mental health and this features in all our messaging, across all police disciplines.
Let’s be there for our colleagues – if someone looks to be struggling, please talk to them and check they are OK.
It’s a difficult time of year but together we can approach 2021 with fresh optimism.