The latest cohort of Police and Community Support Officers (PCSOs) who will be serving County Durham and Darlington has been unveiled.
Seven new PCSOs will soon take to the streets after undergoing an intensive three-week training programme where they will learn about the law, problem solving, technology, communication, personal safety and partnership working before joining a local neighbourhood policing team.
Assistant Chief Officer, Gary Ridley said: “This is great news for the people of Durham and Darlington. Our PCSOs are highly professional and well-liked by the public. They provide an invaluable role in terms of solving local community problems.
“The new PCSOs replace existing ones who have quite often gone on to become police constables.
“This helps to ensure service continuity and means that we get the best people to protect local people. They are given excellent training and ongoing support before being allocated to a neighbourhood team.
“It’s always a pleasure to welcome new faces to the force and I am sure that these PCSOs will have a varied and exciting career ahead of them. PCSOs are an important part of what we do and I know how much their reassuring presence means to local residents.”
Budding recruits could be conducting house-to-house enquiries to support police investigations one day and helping locate a missing person the next.
Newcomer Benjamin Scott, 36, of Darlington, previously worked as an associate practitioner in mental health within the NHS.
He said: “I am incredibly proud to work for my local police force – one of the best forces in the UK. I look forward to being at the heart of the community.”
Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner Ron Hogg said “I am delighted that the force has been able to recruit these very promising new PCSOs.
“Their recruitment reflects my commitment to the public of Durham and Darlington that I will use their money wisely, giving real priority to front-line policing by maintaining officer numbers. Our resources remain stretched however.
“I continue to call on the Government to provide sufficient funding to maximise the number of officers in Durham and Darlington in the future.”