Detectives In Crisis

The resourcing and retention of Detectives is “a massive issue” in Hampshire.

Hampshire Police Federation Chair Zoë Wakefield was speaking following the Police Federation National Detective Forum’s virtual seminar on 13 June. The seminar heard ongoing concerns about the wellbeing, retention and recruitment of investigators across the police service.

Zoë said: “Detective resourcing nationally is a problem, and it’s a massive issue in Hampshire. The force is doing a lot to try to rectify the situation, but we’ve got a ridiculous number of vacancies for Detectives and I think there are lots of reasons for that.

“The workload is huge and a lot of people just can’t manage it. And there are also issues with not having enough tutors. We have many direct-entry DCs, so the tutors have lots of student officers each, on top of their own workload. Then the new DCs may feel like they haven’t been given enough guidance.

“There are also big issues with student officers because they have to achieve Independent Patrol status, but they also have to do the National Investigators’ Exam as well in the middle of all of that. It’s a lot of pressure on them at a time where they’re still learning the job.”

Zoë continued: “The force is offering an increased bonus payment and other measures to attract people into the Detective world and retain them. The force is doing a lot, but pay is still a massive issue.

“We know there are a lot of people in the private sector who have good investigative skills, and some would probably love to come over to deal with crime, but they’d have to take a massive pay cut and why would they? They’d be working long hours, weekends and nights for less money.”

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