The Police Covenant.

The Government has put forward plans for a police covenant similar to the Armed Forces Covenant which had its principles enshrined in law in the Armed Forces Act 2011.

Like the Armed Forces Covenant the Police Covenant will not create legally enforceable rights for Police personnel, but instead will introduce a legal requirement for the Home Office to report on its principles annually

The Covenant will read as follows:

"This Covenant acknowledges the sacrifices made by those who serve or have served in our Police Forces, either in a paid or voluntary capacity, whether as an officer or as a member of staff. It is intended to ensure that they and their families are not disadvantaged as a result of that commitment and seeks to mitigate the impact on their day to day life or in their access to justice. Police officers are required at all times to uphold the important principles of policing by consent, the foundation of their long-standing relationship with the public. We ask a great deal of our police and we expect the highest standards to be maintained. In return, we have a responsibility to provide protection and support to the police.

The Covenant recognises that working within policing comes with a high level of personal accountability, duty and responsibility

requiring courage and personal risk both on and off duty. This recognition extends to all those who support police forces in upholding the principles and practices of their vocation. Recognising those who have served in policing unites the country and demonstrates the value of their sacrifice. This has no greater expression than in upholding this Covenant." *

*source House of Commons Library Briefing Paper number 9110

Anything that helps with job retention and morale can only be a plus. The Government must uphold its side of the Covenant and act on recommendations derived from the yearly report.

There also needs to be a proper return to policing by consent rather than the vision of a police state that we have seen over the past seventeen months. Many officers have reported a big decline in morale as the continually changing lines between pandemic legislation and guidance became blurred. This led to public trust in the police dropping to very low levels of confidence.