After two years, a plethora of conversations and a whole series of improvements, Cheshire’s Youth Ambassador is leaving his role… to become a police officer.
As the only Youth Ambassador in the country, Dominic Rogers has been representing young people’s concerns to the Police and Crime Commissioner John Dwyer and identifying improvements that have made the Cheshire Constabulary more effective in its dealings with young people.
Dominic, 25, said: “Working to protect the people of Cheshire is something I will endeavour to do in my new role as a police officer. I will also continue to maintain an interest in protecting children and young people through this role and I am very much looking forward to starting.”
Looking back over his time as Youth Ambassador he said: “Starting the role, at the age of 23, with no blueprint or contemporaries nationally was a daunting task. My first priority was to understand the policing needs of Cheshire’s young people and identify areas of improvement. Through my consultation with young people, online and face to face at schools and colleges I have been able to better understand what children and young people consider important for policing and feed this into the Commissioner’s Police and Crime Plan.”
Cheshire Police and Crime Commissioner, John Dwyer, committed to employing a Youth Ambassador to represent the views of young people and act as a conduit between himself and young people.
The last two years have seen a wide range of initiatives delivered that place the needs of young people at the forefront and, critically, involved young people every step of the way.
Some of the highlights have included:
- Better information for young people who end up in custody. Custody is a daunting enough experience for adults, but for children even more so. Making sure they know what to expect and who can help at this time is vital.
- Developing a training package for police officers around the development of the adolescent brain to assist officers when communicating with young people.
- Enhancements in the role of officers assigned to work with children in care homes to improve links and safeguarding.
- Work to ensure that the support offered to young victims of sexual violence is available no matter what the victim’s age, reinforcing our commitment to victims of crime.
- Developing an awareness video and support offer for young people affected by parental imprisonment.
- Undertaking reviews alongside young people around stop and search procedures.
Dominic said: “With all the diverse projects I have been involved in it is hard to pick a single achievement that I am most proud of over the last two years. That said, the simple fact that when I now speak to police officers and PSCOs across the county there is a far greater understanding and consideration of the needs of young people, and the factors which influence their behaviour, than there was when I came into post gives me great pride and provides a solid foundation for the future.
“The role has also given me a fantastic insight into the great work that the Constabulary does to protect the communities of Cheshire. Much of this work goes on outside of public view but is vital in ensuring that the public are safe.
“I would like to thank all the people that I have had the opportunity to work alongside during the last two years. There are some great people working in agencies across the county ensuring young people are safe and have opportunities to develop.”
John Dwyer, Police and Crime Commissioner said: “In my manifesto I prioritised the views and needs of children and young people and committed to creating the role of Youth Ambassador. Dominic’s hard work over the course of the last 2 years has ensured that young people in our community have been represented and have seen real benefits. I would like to thank him for all of his work and commitment and wish him well for the future in his career as a police officer. The work started by Dominic will continue.”