What's your background?
I initially joined as a Special Constable in February 2016 while studying mathematics at the University of Hertfordshire. I graduated with first-class honours and joined the force as a full-time Police Constable. Two years on, I was offered my dream job in engineering but I wanted to continue serving the police and so I returned as a Special Constable in May 2019.
What made you apply to become a Special Constable?
I joined to make a difference in local communities and give something back during my spare time. Hatfield, in particular, is where I studied and I wanted to help people in any way that I could and felt that I could develop myself at the same time. I also wanted an additional challenge on top of work and studying commitments.
Where do you work as a Special Constable?
I'm based at Hatfield working on 999 response and on the Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) however I have completed attachments with the Roads Policing Unit (RPU) and Case Investigation Team (CIT).
What kinds of duties do you carry out?
I work with other Specials and regular officers responding to 999 and 101 calls, attending a multitude of incidents. Some can be people asking for advice or dealing with road traffic collisions, while others can be life-threatening or life-changing for those involved. We also take part in specialist operations, ranging from plain clothes duties to high visibility public reassurance patrols.
What do you enjoy about being a Special Constable?
I really enjoy the flexibility and variation of the work. I'm able to fit the hours around my work and always find that other officers are very supportive and willing to help should I need it. The role is intense and the environment very fast-paced, however it can be extremely rewarding when you make a genuine difference to someone's life. I often find myself helping people at their worst or lowest and take pride in offering them assistance when they need it most. There is also a great family feeling to the police, when you join you become part of a bigger family that will always be there for one another. It's the sense of belonging that I also really enjoy.
Would you encourage others to become a Special Constable?
I would strongly encourage people to join because it really is a chance to make a positive impact on other people's lives. Not only that, it also gives you the ability to give back to your communities and tackle issues that matter to them first hand. It's a great challenge and with adequate planning, you'll almost certainly be able to fit in around your work, family and social commitments.
What are the benefits to being a Special Constable?
You make friends and become part of a team, forming incredible bonds. You develop a whole range of abilities and it takes you out of your comfort zone. You're supported throughout and gain an incredible amount of life experience from it. There's a lot of opportunity for development too. An example is the response driving course which I recently passed – this has enabled me to use blue lights and sirens which is a huge privilege and highlights the commitment and trust the Constabulary are willing to put into Specials. I'd definitely recommend it to anyone.