New specials sworn-in at first attestation ceremony in three-and-a-half years
Fifteen new special constables have been sworn-in to West Midlands Police at the force’s first attestation ceremony in three-and-a-half years.
It was the final stage of an intensive 16 week programme for the volunteers, who swore an oath of allegiance to the Queen in front of a Justice of the Peace as well as family, friends and colleagues.
The new recruits, who have the same powers as regular officers but give up their spare time for free to make a difference in their community, are now ready to take to the streets.
Last night’s (29 April) attestation ceremony at Tally Ho in Edgbaston was the first to be held for new West Midlands Police constables since October 2010 when all recruitment was frozen.
Dozens of other volunteers will follow suit in the coming months following a recruitment drive last autumn to recruit 50 new specials.
And with 450 regular police constables due to join the force over the next two years, the number of newly enrolled officers will continue to rise.
Superintendent Richard Youds, who oversaw the specials recruitment process, said: “I’d like to congratulate the first 15 special constables that have now finished their basic training and been ‘sworn in’, meaning that they have the same powers as regular officers.
“They have not only been successful in the recent recruitment process, they have now also shown a high level of commitment and dedication in completing the 16 weeks basic training.
“This has been done in the evenings and weekends and it a great credit to them that they are now ready to police the West Midlands.
“The special constables will be working closely with regular officers in neighbourhoods across the force and will undoubtedly make a difference to the communities in which they work and I look forward to seeing them enjoying their new roles and the difference they will make to the lives of local people.
Deputy Chief Officer of the West Midlands Special Constabulary, Mike Rogers, said: “The commitment of the newly joined officers is immense and it fills me with great pride to see about that commitment; they’re extremely enlightened, hugely enthusiastic and really keen to get out there and serve the public.
“The West Midlands Special Constabulary is going from strength to strength and with more of our officers in specialist roles than ever before – such as on the motorway with the Central Motorway Police Group and in Force CID, investigating serious crime – never has the Special Constabulary played such a crucial role in fighting crime.”
Police and Crime Commissioner Bob Jones said: “Special constables are remarkable volunteers who give their time for their community. Specials are vital in supporting local policing.
“These 50 new recruits will be a fantastic addition to the officers and staff of West Midlands Police on the streets, protecting the people of the West Midlands.
“I set out in my Police and Crime Plan how I wanted to recruit an additional 50 specials to support the work of regular officers and police community support officers (PCSOs) and we’re also recruiting further specials to support our joint Safer Travel teams and the Safer Homes project in Coventry.
“Specials are now also supporting policing on our motorways and at Birmingham Airport. They are an integral part of policing, and I am delighted to welcome these new recruits.”
Pictured left to right: PCC Bob Jones, Brendan Connor JP, Special Constabulary Deputy Chief Officer Mike Rogers, 15 new recruits, Chief Constable Chris Sims, Deputy PCC Yvonne Mosquito.
The first group of new recruits will be going to the following Local Policing Units:
Birmingham West & Central – 6
Wolverhampton – 3
Sandwell – 3
Walsall – 2
Coventry – 1
See a video of the new special constables during their training programme: