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National praise for North Yorkshire neighbourhood policing scheme

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A pioneering scheme to boost neighbourhood policing in North Yorkshire has received national recognition.

New Neighbourhood Policing guidelines, published this week by the College of Policing, highlight North Yorkshire Police’s commitment to developing officers and staff – so they can better protect the communities they serve.

Neighbourhood policing staff in North Yorkshire – made up of teams of PCSOs, PCs, Sergeants and Inspectors – obtain a formal qualification in Neighbourhood Management. This provides them with the tools they need to do the job, and formal recognition of the skills needed to undertake this specialist area of policing.

PCSOs, PCs and Sergeants obtain a level 3 award in Understanding Neighbourhood Management, while Inspectors obtain a level 5 award in Neighbourhood and Community Planning.

The development of the initiative to award a formal qualification was a direct result of recommendations made in the force’s review of neighbourhood policing, published in October 2015. The need for specific training around neighbourhood policing was strongly reflected in the feedback from focus groups involved in the review. This feedback was also used to create content for the course.

In its evaluation of the scheme, the College of Policing writes: “The introduction of the qualification has been well received by staff and there has been positive feedback on formally recognising skills and professionalising neighbourhood policing.”

The evaluation also highlights other positive aspects, including the course content developed by frontline officers and staff, and the passion of the subject matter experts who provide the training.

Deputy Chief Constable Phil Cain, of North Yorkshire Police, said: “Neighbourhood policing has always been right at the heart of our service here in North Yorkshire, and we’ve done a huge amount of work with our neighbourhood teams to ensure we have the right people in the right places, with the equipment and training they need to do the job effectively.

“We are absolutely committed to providing a high-quality service to local communities, so it is good to see the College of Policing recognising our Neighbourhood Management qualification scheme as a national case study.”