Employer Supported Policing

What is Employer Supported Policing?

Employer Supported Policing (ESP) is a scheme in which an organisation can support its staff in volunteering as a Special Constable. It is an effective partnership that benefits local and national employers, their staff and the police service.

Liam is currently a Special Constable with Cheshire Police. He said: “I have a flexible working arrangement with my employer, Barclays, so I’m able to work from home and modify my hours on certain days. Barclays also allows me up to five working days a year in additional paid leave, which allows me more time to police my community.”

We are asking supporting organisations to consider releasing their staff who are Special Constables by giving them paid time off, or to allow flexible working, in order to undertake their volunteer police duties and/or training.

Cheshire Police works in partnership with a number of employers to roll out the ESP scheme. Work continues to develop links with employers and expand ESP across the force.

Supporting organisations allow their staff to be trained as Special Constables and provide them with paid leave, or flexible time, to undertake police duties. Special Constables have full police powers to carry out patrols in key areas in Cheshire. 

ESP provides staff with extensive skills and experience, as well as strengthening police and employer relationships directly to keep people safe in Cheshire.

At the heart of the Special Constabulary training package are the seven core skills or competencies that every police officer must be proficient in.These are:

  • Personal responsibility
  • Problem solving
  • Effective communication
  • Customer focus
  • Teamwork
  • Resilience
  • Respect for diversity

These are transferable skills which staff will be able to put to use, not only in their professional capacity, but also in their personal life.

Your business can become part of the Employer Supported Policing Scheme, which gives you the opportunity to support the Special Constabulary through a number of different options. The scheme enables an effective partnership between employers, their staff and the police and can support individuals who wish to volunteer time for the benefit of Cheshire communities.

Cheshire Constabulary’s own Employer Supported Policing Scheme is for members of our own staff who wish to become Special Constables. For example, we provide eight hours of paid leave per month.

Employer Supported Policing provides employees with access to the full training and skills set needed to become a Special Constable.

Employer Supported Policing brings a number of benefits to the community, the police, employers and individuals.

To the community

  • Increased direct engagement with local police
  • Increased reassurance due to more visible policing on the street
  • Increased public confidence
  • Greater resources for tackling crime and disorder, resulting on lower levels of crime and higher sense of security

To staff/Specials

  • Professional Development
  • Enhancing skills and training, valuable for career progression
  • Giving something back to the community
  • Fulfilment and improved relationship with employer – more flexibility for supporting time and volunteer work

To employers

  • Supporting their local community
  • Staff development at little or no cost
  • Improves staff morale and motivation
  • Greater staff retention/lower recruitment costs

To the police

  • Improved recruitment and retention
  • Wider pool of resources available
  • Potential rise in public reassurance and confidence
  • Positive marketing opportunity
  • More integration with community and local businesses

The Employer Supported Policing scheme has five options designed to encourage organisations and businesses, both large and small, to engage with the police service to support their staff who are Special Constables.

Option 1

  • Active and ongoing support of the concept of the ESP definition through promoting the recruitment of Special Constables

Option 2

  • Agreed training and release in times of significant emergency
  • Actively encourage staff to be Specials
  • Allow use of facilities where appropriate

Option 3

  • A minimum of 4 hours per month paid time off for Special Constabulary duties
  • 50% time off allowed for Special Constabulary training
  • Published organisational policy of guidelines supporting Special Constabulary duties and training

Option 4

  • Full time off allowed/credited for Special Constabulary training
  • A minimum of 8 hours per month paid time off for Special Constabulary duties

Option 5

  • On a local level, we recognise that not all organisations can fit their policies around options 1 to 4, therefore we have introduced a bespoke option that can be selected to match whatever additional paid support you can give to your staff that are specials.



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