Dorset Police is dedicated to ensuring everyone can thrive and flourish in our communities and our workforce.
We want to outline the work we are delivering across the county and within our organisation to ensure we provide the best possible service to our communities, as well as providing a positive, safe and inclusive work environment where our officers, staff and volunteers can thrive and deliver their best.
Our focus, and one of our six strategic priorities, is to continually build public trust and confidence in policing through the delivery of ethical and inclusive practice. We are absolutely
committed to ensuring that our workforce delivers a high-quality service, protects our communities and that our staff are fit to serve the organisation and protect the most vulnerable
people in society. To achieve this, we have set a clear commitment and delivery plan that aims to meet the needs of our communities and our people.
Our commitment to our communities
Effective policing is enhanced when our communities have confidence in the police – the
confidence to come forward, the trust they will be listened to, treated fairly with respect and
dignity and confidence that we will respond effectively and professionally by:
• Demonstrating and upholding standards and ethics
• Delivering fair and legitimate policing that is independently scrutinised
• Providing an inclusive service, accessible to all
• Neighbourhood policing that is visible and connected with local communities
• Newly formed Independent Advisory Groups that represent our communities
• Reaching out to those seldom heard or seldom listened to groups and communities
• Encouraging challenge through independent and external scrutiny
Independent scrutiny and consultation
Independent Advisory Groups (IAGs): These groups provide us with the opportunity to have an open dialogue with members of the community who are from a range of different
backgrounds, and we are in the process of reinvigorating the IAG model so that it is representative of our communities. IAGs provide valuable insight and personal views on policing policies and practices and their impact within communities. The advice and support from the IAGs following a critical incident is very important to us. Not only does it provide the opportunity to reassure the community, it also enables the Force to gain a better insight and a richer picture to inform our policing approach. By engaging with and involving our IAGs at the earliest opportunity, we help reduce community tensions, gain a greater understanding of impact and achieve an open and transparent dialogue with the people most affected by whatever has happened.
External and independent scrutiny forum: The Deputy Chief Constable is currently establishing an additional external and independent scrutiny forum to support the ongoing work of the Policing Powers Board, which provides transparent examination of the use of our police powers, including the use of stop and search, use of force, use of body worn video and complaints.
We will act upon the scrutiny and challenge received to demonstrate to the public and our workforce our desire to improve, learn and drive-up standards. This forum, led by an independent chair, will meet in a neutral venue, with online access to accommodate the needs of those participating and will consist of a diverse membership, including Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people and young people.
Establishing a professional network: We have also developed a network of local charities, authorities and organisations to provide education on police perpetrated offending, with a
focus on Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) and Abuse of Position for a Sexual Purpose (APSP). The aim of establishing the network is to help other professionals, particularly those who work with vulnerable members of our communities, to be able to identify any incidents or concerns and have confidence in reporting it. We regularly communicate with the network and have seen good levels of reporting and engagement from these partners.
Our commitment to our people
We are committed to providing a workplace environment where every officer, member of staff and volunteer can flourish, grow, and develop knowing they work for an organisation that has clear standards and ethics. An organisation where voices are heard and where people have the confidence to challenge and call out discriminatory and inappropriate language and behaviour by:
• Demonstrating and upholding standards and ethics
• Challenging behaviour outside of our values
• Creating ‘safe’ environments where everyone can flourish
• Listening to, understanding and responding to our people
• Delivering professional development and awareness training
• Dealing robustly with those who do not meet with our standards of behaviour
Understanding our culture
We have recently published a new Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion strategy, and established four pillars to ensure everyone is:
We have pledged our backing and support to the Police Race Action Plan, and since its publication a great deal of work has been taking place internally and externally, and I am
determined to ensure we drive forward our commitment to this plan.
Force Professional Standards Department: The Force’s Professional Standards Department proactively investigates any reported cases of misconduct or criminality by our
officers, staff and volunteers with transparency and integrity. This is further supported by our Counter Corruption Unit whose aim is to heighten the awareness of corruption issues with
members of the Force, lessen the opportunity for the unscrupulous to infiltrate policing and prevent offending and corruption. The work of these units ensures robust investigations of
complaints and allegations, with outcomes ranging from misconduct sanctions to dismissal. We continue to rely on the public, partners and stakeholders to call out and report any
behaviour that they recognise as being inappropriate so that our Professional Standards Department can robustly investigate and respond to reports and allegations.
Professional Standards and Ethics Conferences: The Force has concluded the delivery of a one-day Standards and Ethics Conference to all our first- and second-line managers and
the senior team focused on ethical leadership and engendering standards of professional behaviours in the workplace. This training utilises ethical dilemmas, discusses professional
standards risks to the organisation, touches on how to build quality teams and ensures people have the confidence and skills to identify, challenge and report issues. This supports a wider
range of professional development being delivered across the Force, including unconscious bias and bystander intervention training.
Survivors’ Network Group: Another development in 2022 was the creation of a Survivors’ Network Group, which was formed because of an internal investigation into sexual harassment
in the workplace, where learning and feedback from the victims led to the creation of the group for officers, staff and volunteers. The group provides advice, direction, and acts as a sounding
board to the Force on issues relating to supporting victims and preventing offending in the workplace.
‘Call it Out’ behaviours campaign: We have recently launched the ‘Call it Out’ behaviours campaign, which aims to drive out prejudice, discrimination, and corruption, and reminds
colleagues of their responsibility to call out unacceptable behaviour. As a result of this activity, we have already seen an increased willingness amongst our staff to raise concerns, including
a number of self-referrals.
Our communities must have trust and confidence in our commitment to identify those officers, staff and volunteers who should not be employed by the organisation and be satisfied that we
have robust review processes in place so we can continue to identify those who break the law or demonstrate behaviours that will not be tolerated.
Read the Call It Out campaign material here: Call_It_Out_Dorset_Version2
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