I have always believed effective policing is at the heart of healthy society. That is why Hampshire Constabulary can’t afford to just maintain its position as a good police force. It must become a standard bearer for protecting the most vulnerable and reducing offending. And, as your new Chief Constable, I am excited about taking on this challenge.
A key part of success will remain catching those who prey on the vulnerable, but we can’t just respond to victims when they have suffered. We need to be better at preventing offending in the first place. This includes safeguarding the vulnerable, not least those at risk of child sexual exploitation and domestic abuse. None of this can be done by the police acting alone.
The cases we deal with can be complex and the unfortunate truths are that that we tend to deal with people on their most difficult days and much of the sophisticated work that goes on behind the scenes to stop people becoming victims cannot be widely publicised. This means that what my officers, staff and those who volunteer their help do every day is important, but so is why and how.
If the police are seen to act arrogantly or as if they have a right to do as they wish public confidence becomes damaged and victims are not put first. To be an effective police officer, let alone chief constable, you need to earn the trust and respect of all communities. That is what decades of British policing has been built upon. So everything we do must be rooted in the highest standards of integrity and transparency. You deserve nothing less from us.
Our communities are wonderfully rich, diverse and deserving of brilliant policing. I want ideas, voices, perspectives and experience beyond the traditional spheres. I would like to use this opportunity on day one in my new role to invite all of you to join me, to work with me and to support my staff and officers.
In return we will become even better at protecting you and safeguarding the most vulnerable in society. And, as your Chief Constable, I will work tirelessly to make sure that what we do is as transparent as possible and to explain the difficult decisions when we have to make them.
Together we can keep this one of the safest places to live in the country and stop those who make people’s lives a misery.
Olivia Pinkney, Chief Constable, Hampshire Constabulary