• Recruiting for Gloucestershire Constabulary’s new role of Voluntary Police Community Support Officer (VPCSOs) begins today (23 March)
  • VPCSOs will act as a key liaison point at grass roots level between local communities and policing
  • Police and Crime Commissioner Chris Nelson said, “VPCSOs will work alongside regular PCSOs and the neighbourhood policing teams, providing an additional visible, accessible and approachable uniformed presence”
  • Three intakes are planned. The closing date for applications for the first intake is 19 April.

The pledge to build-up the Constabulary was one of the main reasons why Chris Nelson was elected Police and Crime Commissioner.

Among his more innovative ideas was to introduce a new role for Volunteer Police Community Support Officers, which is officially launched today.

The recruitment process opens today (23 March). Three intakes are planned with the closing date for the first intake 19 April.

VPCSOs, as they will be known, will act as a key liaison point at grass roots level between local communities and policing. They will have a very different role from other branches of the police family and will be:

  • Responsible for older people (in their community) – updating them on relevant crimes like scams and being aware of vulnerable individuals in their patch
  • In schools – delivering the Mini Police Programme to 8-11 year olds
  • Neighbourhood Watch – linking-in with all NHW co-coordinators in their area, helping to develop new schemes and growing the Your Community Alert email system to improve crime prevention
  • Gathering intelligence – knowing their area and becoming a visible and reliable presence.

“We know how much PCSOs are valued”

PCC Chris Nelson said, “I am a great believer in the extra value volunteers add through the skills and experience they have from outside policing and we are particularly looking for people who know and love their community and want to play their part in keeping it safe.

“VPCSOs will work alongside regular PCSOs and the neighbourhood policing teams. Providing an additional, visible, accessible and approachable uniformed presence will lead to stronger communities; enabling the police to gather necessary information and intelligence to tackle localised crime and anti-social behaviour.

“Strengthening the Constabulary and tackling anti-sociable behaviour are two of the promises I made in my election manifesto, and on which my Police and Crime Prevention Plan is based.

“We know how much PCSOs are valued. This new role will be able to build on that and improve public confidence still further”.

VPCSOs will not have designated legal powers of enforcement and they will not be deployable. They will work flexible hours to match their availability and operate in their own neighbourhood with a view to building strong, trusting, working relationships within their own community.

There are 12 vacancies for the first intake.

You can find out more and how to apply here: Volunteer Police Community Support Officer (VPCSO) | Gloucestershire Constabulary