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West Midlands Police Federation

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George receives Chief Constable’s award

23 July 2020

George McDonnell, West Midlands Police Federation’s conduct lead, has been presented with a Chief Constable’s Award in recognition of his dedication to supporting members.

George, who became the Conduct and Performance Lead Officer (CAPLO) in June last year, was presented with the award by Chief Constable Dave Thompson.

“Supporting colleagues through conduct and performance processes is rewarding, and challenging,” says George, “It’s not a role you take on thinking you are going to get an award from the Chief Constable so I am really pleased that Mr Thompson has recognised the part I play not just in supporting officers but also in helping the Force.

“Of course, I don’t work in isolation. I share the role with Dave Hadley and we also have a CAPLO committee so I would like to pay tribute to their work too. We are all part of a team and we are committed to doing the best we can for members and for the Force.

“Having been investigated myself, with the outcome being an entry in a police notebook and an apology for the whole sorry episode not being concluded more quickly, I remember the experience being completely daunting so I have an understanding of how colleagues feel when they are facing conduct proceedings.

“This has helped me as I have developed this role,” he says.

A constant challenge has been ensuring the line between officers making an honest mistake and being deliberately bad is maintained, something he hopes the new conduct regulations introduced earlier this year should finally resolve.

But he also believes officers need to play their part in helping improve performance.

“We all need to continually reflect on self-performance, ask whether we could have done something differently or better. As a Federation, we have to drive that reflection but continually hold the investigating authorities to account on behalf of all those who have been investigated or are under investigation,” he says.

“We also have to encourage those same authorities to conduct their business more expeditiously, be more professional and to adhere to the same standards against which we are often measuring our officers.”

George joined the Force in October 2001 and was posted to response for five years, listing a rewarding posting to the professional development unit as a highlight, along with receiving several Commander Commendations.

He first became a Federation workplace representative in January 2014, formalising a role he had found himself undertaking quite by chance.

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September 2020
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