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Major change to police recruitment rules

Monday, 14 October 2013

Under the current system, all recruits must begin their policing career as a constable and work their way up. However, a new system will allow people from the armed forces or successful business leaders to move into senior posts within the police without working their way up from a constable. It will also allow high ranking officers from other countries to join a chief constable.

The changes to the system come after Chief Inspector of Constabulary Tom Winsor, a former rail regulator, published a report with his series of recommendations. He stated that the new plans for the system could “change the face” of British Policing.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe, who is the UK’s top ranking officer, said he hopes to employ 10% of senior officers from outside the force.

However, there has been some criticism with the police force the planned changes. President of the Police Superintendents' Association of England and Wales, Derek Barnett, warned that direct entry into higher levels of the police force could pose a risk to the public with a lack of training. Sir Hugh Orde, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers added that he did not want people on “work experience” in top policing posts.

Police Minister Damian Green has supported the plans and stated that other organisations like the army and the prison service already had such schemes.

He stated, ‘if you widen the pool of talent, then you will get even better policing in this country."