Serving members of the Royal Military Police (RMP) have joined forces with the South Staffordshire local policing team in a new partnership initiative.
Starting on the 19th September, Corporals Katie Butlin and Michael Knapper have embedded with neighbourhood officers in the south of the county.
They have been vetted and trained to the same standards as their existing officers and will be part of the local policing team (LPT) for the next 30 days.
It forms part of Staffordshire Police’s commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant and will see the force working closely with Royal Military Police to share expertise and experience on a multi-agency level.
The force joined the placement programme following the success of the pilot scheme in Hampshire and North Yorkshire last year, where military and civilian police officers were able to collaborate to keep the local community safe and further strengthen the relationship between the Army and the force locally.
RMP personnel come equipped with their own policing experience, training and knowledge and will be working alongside existing officers to make a difference to local communities in Staffordshire. They will be accompanied by an uniformed police officer at all times and will have access to the force’s own Armed Forces Network to ensure they have all of the support needed to keep people safe.
Cpl Butlin, who has served eight and a half years with RMP, has always wanted to experience neighbourhood policing. She said: “I’m always looking at ways to expand my experience in frontline policing and this was something I couldn’t say no to.
“Everyone I’ve met across the force has been so welcoming since I started here. I’m looking forward to getting out there in local communities and working alongside my colleagues to help keep people safe.”
Cpl Knapper, who is from Stafford and has nearly six years’ experience with RMP, said: “A lot of the skills you gain in military policing are transferrable and I’m eager to contribute all I can to the LPT and help to strengthen the relationship between military and civilian policing in Staffordshire.
“I think this is going to be a really useful and diverse experience for both parties. Hopefully this is the start of more placements in the future which can benefit the public, military police and Staffordshire Police.”
Chief Inspector Chris Cotton, from the South Staffs LPT, said: “We are proud to be supporting both serving and ex-members of the Armed Forces.
“This is about supporting RMP officers in their professional development and using their skills and experience to benefit civilian communities and local policing in Staffordshire.
“It’s really pleasing to see the reception that the placement holders have had with the policing team in South Staffs and I’m looking forward to them both learning new skills and practices from one another throughout their time together.”
Staffordshire Commissioner for Police, Fire & Rescue and Crime Ben Adams said: “It’s great to see Staffordshire Police and the Royal Military Police coming together in this way, reflecting the commitment made by the force as part of the Armed Forces Covenant.
“Both the police and the Armed Forces play an important role in keeping us all safe, and this placement is an excellent opportunity for the organisations, and the individuals themselves, to learn from each other as a result of the shared activity.”
The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise from the nation that those who serve or have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly. We encourage all organisations who haven’t signed the covenant to do so.
Find out more about the Armed Forces Covenant.
Learn about Staffordshire Police’s commitment to the wider Armed Forces community in Staffordshire.
Back in July, the force also signed an agreement with Veteran’s Aid to further support the Armed Forces community.