Joint statement on chief officer recruitment and tenure


Association of Police and Crime Commissioners Chair, Mark Burns-Williamson PCC, said:

“I am pleased that a roundtable meeting has been convened between the APCC, NPCC, College of Policing and relevant partners to discuss a range of issues in relation to chief constable selection, tenure, leadership and training and identify solutions.

“Every Police and Crime Commissioner wants to select and appoint a chief constable from a strong and varied field of candidates. The current group of chief constables are highly capable and experienced. However, it must be in the interests of the public and policing to ensure a strong and diverse flow of talent through the ranks to ensure the best possible field of candidates for chief constables appointments.

“We are committed to working together with partners across policing to address the barriers and obstacles that restrict the flow of talent into the chief officer ranks.”

National Police Chiefs’ Council Chair, Chief Constable Sara Thornton said:

“I am seriously concerned that fewer chief officers are applying for chief constable roles and that those already in them are staying in post for shorter periods.  It is important that we understand why this is happening.

“We commissioned a series of interviews with retired chief constables, serving chief officers and police and crime commissioners where they spoke candidly and provided an important perspective. It is essential we properly consider the issues raised and make positive change to encourage the widest pool of people to aspire to be police leaders.”

College of Policing CEO, Chief Constable, Mike Cunningham, said:

“Policing requires exemplary leadership to support officers and staff who have a challenging job and work in high-risk situations.

“Last year the College of Policing undertook a thorough investigation of these issues with input from more than half of serving chief constables and police and crime commissioners in England and Wales. We recognised then that the number of officers applying for the role of chief constable is too low and have taken action by carrying out a review of chief officer selection and training, and developing plans for a leadership hub. Tackling the problems is a shared responsibility with leaders in policing and that is why I am chairing a round table with police and crime commissioners to consider all the available evidence and reach a common understanding of the challenges. There is a commitment across the service to understand what needs to change so that police forces can nurture and support our future leaders.”


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