Jersey Police 'struggling' with recruitment and retention

The Jersey Police Authority says its worried the force is struggling to hire and keep hold of staff.

Comments about recruitment at the States of Jersey Police come from the Chair of the JPA, who has been reflecting on the force's 2023 annual report. 

It revealed an underspend of £200,000 last year, which has been blamed on 'significant delays' in the recruitment process, as well as vacancies and resignations throughout the year. 

The money was redistributed and used to meet non-staff cost pressures relating to firearms travel, training, equipment maintenance and fuel costs.

Simon Harman, Chair of Jersey Police Authority, says the struggle was not surprising: 

"The police service, along with other emergency services are struggling in terms of being an employer of choice. 

"It's a lovely island. There are a lot of employers out there that will pay very, very well; have good terms and conditions; not expect you to work Saturday or Sunday nights - and for more money.

"Policing isn't really being seen as a career for life for some people.

"It used to be you joined at 18, then you left 25 -26 years later and had a great career. 

"I think a lot of people use it now as more of a stepping stone, do a couple of years then do something else. So I think the delays (to recruiting) were inevitable."

In spite of this, Simon Harman thinks its important to acknowledge the achievements of the past year and move forward: 

"By working together, we have utilised out strengths and resources to tackle the diverse needs and challenges faced by the island.

"Looking ahead, we are committed to building upon the foundation of excellence established in 2023.

"We will focus on innovation, collaboration, and community engagement to meet the evolving demands of modern policing."

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