Backing the detectives
The Federation believes detective policing is on the brink of crisis based on the findings of its latest national survey.
And it has now launched a campaign aimed at highlighting the realities of the role during which, detectives, both practising and retired, will share their stories.
A series of case studies will raise awareness of the stress that comes with being a detective, the types of investigative work that officers get involved with and the detrimental impact a lack of resources is having.
Karen Stephens, secretary of the Police Federation's National Detectives' Forum, said: "We cannot ignore that there is a crisis in detective policing - this is supported by the high proportion of officers who took part in our survey.
"There is a serious demand and capacity imbalance in this high-pressure role and I have seen the toll this is taking on colleagues - it says a lot when senior police figures are recognising the problem and openly supporting our campaign.
"We want forces, chief officers, Police and Crime Commissioners, the College of Policing and the Government to look at the demands on detective policing and make changes to better support the welfare of my colleagues."
Last year's national detectives' survey found:
- More than half (56 per cent) of the 7,803 respondents, said cuts have had a huge impact on their morale, while more than a quarter of detectives felt their physical and mental health had been affected
- More than half (53 per cent) of respondents also said cuts had led to a substantial increase in fatigue
- Just under half (49 per cent) said cuts had increased stress
- 90 per cent of respondents who had taken sickness absence due to their mental health and wellbeing said the difficulties they experienced were caused, or exacerbated, by work
- More than three quarters (76 per cent) said their workload had increased in the last year
- The same proportion admitted to workloads being too high over the last 12 months, and
- 73 per cent felt they were not able to provide the service victims needed most or all of the time.
Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) last year stated there was a crisis in the role and this has been further substantiated by senior figures voicing their support for the campaign.
South Wales Police Chief Constable Matt Jukes, who is the National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) lead for investigator resilience, said: "The role of investigators is one of the many vital roles in policing and one that officers and staff take great pride in fulfilling.
"However, a significant number of forces are experiencing issues in recruiting and retaining detectives due to a combination of complex factors including those highlighted by the Federation survey.
"Across the country, there are steps being taken to address this and the National Police Chiefs' Council is working with the College of Policing and force colleagues on interventions to fill vacancies including pay and reward structures and revised entry routes, as well as enhanced support for training and wellbeing to help retain officers".
Former Derbyshire Chief Constable Mick Creedon, who spent much of his career as a detective, said: "The reduction in staff and officer numbers and the lack officers working in this area of policing will impact on the collective ability of the police service to protect the public.
"I commend the Police Federation of England and Wales for launching this campaign and will do whatever I can to support the valuable work of the Federation and the role of the detective."