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Special Constables

Volume 704: debated on Monday 22 November 2021

I am sure you agree with me, Mr Speaker, that special constables are among the most remarkable citizens in the land. We are bringing forward legislation to enable them to become members of the Police Federation, so that they can access the same support and protection as regular officers. We will also be introducing the police covenant in legislation shortly to ensure further support and protection for the police workforce, including special constables.

I thank the Minister for his answer. Special constables are often on shift during the busiest periods, as they tend to volunteer at weekends and in the evenings, and as a result are exposed to quite high levels of trauma. I give credit to the Stroud special constables, and ask what my right hon. Friend is doing specifically and actively to support their training for and meet the mental health needs of their unique roles?

I am grateful for the fact that the welfare of this special—in every sense of the word—group of people is at the forefront of my hon. Friend’s mind. She will be pleased to know that the Government continue to fund the national police wellbeing service, which provides support and particularly post-traumatic incident services to all police officers, including special constables. As I said in the earlier part of my answer, there is more that can be done, and by making sure that all special constables are full members of the Police Federation, they will be able to access the significant support that that organisation can provide.