Sussex Police is currently recruiting for new Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) to work alongside frontline officers.
They hope to recruit 32 PCSOs, 16 of whom will start in June 2017 and 16 in the autumn of 2017.
Sussex Police launched the new PCSO role in Sussex in July 2016 with the aim of better reflecting the changing nature of crime and the needs of communities across Sussex, a spokesperson said.
The Sussex PCSO role now equips officers with additional skills and powers, to ensure they are able to tackle the issues that affect the most vulnerable, working in teams where they are needed most across districts rather than a specific neighbourhood, the spokesperson added.
The role still includes community reassurance but – because demands on policing have changed – the additional powers will further assist the work they do with the community and partners to reduce crime and keep people safe, according to the spokesperson.
Deputy Chief Constable Bernie O’Reilly said: “PCSOs are a key part of our policing family, supporting front line officers by undertaking tasks with a focus on crime prevention and problem solving.
“The new role launched in July, has made PCSOs even more effective than before.
“They have a vital role, being deployed where they are most needed to help the vulnerable and deal with local problems.
“Being a PCSO can be challenging, but it is a role that is hugely fulfilling and exciting.”
“Sussex is a great place to live and work due to the varying landscapes; including the city of Brighton and Hove, county towns, smaller coastal towns and rural communities along with one of the busiest airports in the country.
“It is therefore important that across all areas of policing we have staff and officers who represent Sussex. Our vision for policing in Sussex is achieving a workforce that reflects the communities we serve, and in doing so,
“I encourage individuals from diverse backgrounds and cultures to consider all our recruitment and career opportunities.”
Sussex PCC Katy Bourne said: “Community policing in Sussex has remained unchanged for more than a decade and couple with the changing nature of crime, a different policing response is required along with new methods of investigation and forensic analysis.
“This is why I support this new recruitment drive to ensure all officers, including PCSOs are trained and equipped with the necessary skills to continue to keep our communities safe.
“A report last week from Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary praised the ambition of Sussex Police’s Local Policing Model and highlighted the importance of police contact with local communities. PCSOs with new skills and more powers will provide that reassurance to the public and better support to policing teams.
“I will continue to scrutinise Sussex Police and represent the public’s views to ensure that the Chief Constable’s new local policing model maintains public confidence and reassurance, while delivering an effective and efficient police service.”
Sussex Police are looking for good communicators with a calm, confident personality; a problem solver as well as a team player, who easily builds relationships, respects other people and appreciates views from the communities with which we live.
Darren Farrant, one of Sussex Police’s newest PCSO recruits, said: “I wanted to be a PCSO because I wanted to make a difference in Brighton, a place I love.
“The variety of the job was something that attracted me to it; no two days are ever the same. One day you could be out looking for a missing person and the next you could be assisting with a road closer following a road traffic collision.
“I can honestly say that having recently completed my first week on division in Brighton I am glad I made the decision to apply to be a PCSO. The recruitment process is lengthy but it is all worth it, especially when you find your first missing person.”
The role of a PCSO includes:
• being deployed in teams, going where they are most needed, to help solve local problems with communities;
• having an increased focus on actually preventing crime, rather than on visible reassurance alone;
• being better equipped to resolve problems, with communities or alongside partners, as well as prevent crime and disorder;
• having new powers to enter licensed premises and enforce the law, for example to prevent the selling of alcohol to those under age and to tackle anti-social behaviour caused by street drinkers and people who are drunk;
• being equipped with new technology, such as with body worn video cameras, and to have enhanced staff safety training to support their more proactive role;
• providing a modern ‘smarter’ approach to the specific needs of communities and neighbourhoods and not a ‘one-size fits all’ approach.
The window for PCSO Recruitment is open until midnight on Sunday 27 November.
Visit Sussex Police’s website for more information on the role and how to apply.
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