could a PA become a Special Constable?

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falkor
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could a PA become a Special Constable?

Post by falkor » Thu Feb 26, 2009 9:48 am

Plea for workers to join shop cop scheme
LUCY BOLTON
25 February 2009 17:00

A plea has today been issued for more businesses in Norwich to get on board a pioneering crime-fighting scheme where city workers become shop cops.

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Maureen LeLievre who is sponsored by her long-term employer John Lewis to become a special constable.

The ShopWatch scheme, which was launched by police chiefs in April last year, involves businesses asking their staff to become trained special constables to help combat shoplifting and antisocial behaviour in the city centre.

The scheme, which was first introduced in London in 2003, was the first of its kind in Norfolk and showed early signs of promise with three businesses and nine recruits only being trained.

But to date just one person, John Lewis worker Maureen LeLievre, who is sponsored by the store, is still a member of the scheme and there have been calls for more businesses to sign up.

A spokeswoman for Norfolk Constabulary said: “The trained member of staff has been involved in a number of arrests and has been a major asset to the organisation in supporting our regular colleagues. The scheme is very valuable and there is continued interest from other premises in the city.”

Mrs LeLievre, 53, who has worked at the All Saints Green store for 21 years, has hailed the scheme as a great success.

The fitted kitchen consultant, who is married to Stephen, 54, and has a daughter Claire Read, 30, joined up in May last year to the scheme where shop staff train up to fight crime while they work.

She said: “I absolutely love it. I have made five or six of my own arrests that I've seen all the way through and last month I worked about 50 hours out of my own time and I ache like hell now. But it's great and it's really opened my eyes.”

Mrs LeLievre had an initial 14 days of training in May last year when she took over from a former John Lewis employee, who had to give up the scheme with an injured back. Although she has given a lot of her own time in training and regular patrols, she feels lucky that she is paid for two days in every month for the time she works as a special constable.

She said: “Instead of turning up for work I go to the police station in Bethel Street and am teamed up with a regular officer. We then go on patrol in the city and we deal with any shoplifting offences. We go to John Lewis and all around the shops.”

Shoplifting is one of the main crime issues in the city, so the scheme was set up to try to focus on the problem, with the aim of bringing in retail staff who have an inside knowledge.

Mrs LeLievre added: “I think it's really helped me in my role in the shop as it's made me more of a confident person and I have been able to use some of the skills and knowledge of being a special for my work.”

Arthur Griffith, operation manager commercial selling, at John Lewis, said: “John Lewis, as a company co-owned by its workforce, is very much at the heart of our local community and see the Norwich ShopWatch as a further way of benefitting the city.

“The two officers we have provided have not only added to the police presence in the city centre but as individuals have gained much on a personal and professional level.”

The ShopWatch scheme is an ongoing project and Norfolk Constabulary is keen to sign up more companies which are happy to sponsor staff.

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Re: could a PA become a Special Constable?

Post by nighthawk » Mon Mar 02, 2009 5:14 pm

Now, I can only answer from the perspective of a Traffic Warden.. In short, No. GMP's policy was always not to employ a Traffic Warden as a Special Constable. We had one lad who left the Area Ops Room (Comms) to be a TW. He had to resign from being a Special. This was due to it being a clash of interest.

Sorry, I can't answer for PA's..
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Re: could a PA become a Special Constable?

Post by The Highway Man » Mon Mar 02, 2009 10:56 pm

Speaking as an ex P.A. for a city council, we were banned from acting as special constables.

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Re: could a PA become a Special Constable?

Post by nighthawk » Tue Mar 03, 2009 3:57 pm

Might have been for the same reason "clash of interest"..
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