COLUMN: Recruiting more officers means safer communities

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A new year is here and it’s time to close the chapter on 2017 and what a challenging year it was.

The funding crisis caused us unprecedented anxiety and limitation but we forged ahead wherever possible.

The start of 2017 brought us a new Chief Constable who hit the ground running. Craig Guilford’s leadership experience is just what the force needed to push the boundaries of innovation, effectiveness and value in the face of an ever dwindling budget. We also welcomed a new chief officer team with Rachel Barber joining us from South Yorkshire Police as our new Deputy Chief Constable and Steve Cooper was appointed as Nottinghamshire’s new Assistant Chief Constable. These appointments strengthened our senior officer team, giving us fresh perspective and energy to implement the changes necessary to keep Nottinghamshire as safe as possible.

Last year also brought home the exceptional professionalism and bravery of our colleagues further afield, not just the police but paramedics, military personnel and firefighters. The terror atrocities in London and Manchester reminded us of the dangerous risks our police officers face day in and day out to keep people safe.

The UK is living under an unprecedented threat level and the attacks raised challenging questions about policing funding cuts and resilience.

Locally, we’re in the fortunate position of being able to resume recruitment of new police officers and PCSOs. This ultimately means there will be more officers around to help keep our communities safe.

There will be plenty more challenges in 2018, not least of all our funding situation, but recent inspections show progress is being made and we’re in a strong position to continue the good performance.