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Nearly 9,000 officers recruited under drive to hit 20,000

Forces have hired nearly 9,000 officers under the government?s drive to recruit 20,000 by 2023, according to official figures.
Published - 29/04/2021 By - Chloe Livadeas

Home Office statistics released today (29 April) said an overall provisional headcount for officers in England and Wales stood at 137,704 as of March 31.

Since the launch of the Police Uplift Programme in September 2019, 8,771 officers have been recruited, 2,771 more than the initial target of recruiting 6,000 additional officers in the first year

Home Secretary Priti Patel said she was “delighted” by the progress, arguing it “surpassed expectations”, as the Conservative Party welcomed the announcement.

But the Home Office did not provide the number of full time equivalent (FTE) officers, only the headcount which does not take into account officers who are on career breaks or long term sickness.  A spokesperson said the next Police Workforce release which covers FTE will be published in July and the FTE figure for up until 31 March 2021 is not currently available to share.

They added they expect the difference to be negligible.

Boris Johnson said: “In just one year, we have hired an extra 9,000 police officers, smashing our first-year target and putting us well on track to recruit the 20,000 new officers we promised.”

There have been 139,312 applications to become an officer since the campaign was launched.

Policing Minister Kit Malthouse said: “Joining the police to help make neighbourhoods safer is a noble career and I am heartened to see thousands more people make that choice.

“An increase of 8,771 officers is a great achievement, and I want to thank forces for their considerable efforts to help us exceed our target for the first year of the recruitment campaign.”

The number of Black, Asian and other ethnic minority officers is also now at its highest point on record, at 10,218. Since April 2020, recruits from these communities have made up 10.6 per cent (1,212) of all joiners. 42 per cent of the new recruits are female, also a new record.

Mr Malthouse went on to say: “It is fantastic that our police forces are now more diverse than ever before, but we know there is still more work to do to on this front – I will continue working with police leaders to ensure our forces are truly representative of the communities they serve.”

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