Police volunteers who have supported victims of domestic abuse, challenged mental health stigmas and helped tackle modern slavery were honoured at an awards ceremony yesterday.
The Lord Ferrers Awards – which is in its 26th year – celebrates the contributions of Police Support Volunteers, Special Constables, Volunteer Police Cadets, and volunteers supporting the work of Police and Crime Commissioners.
Winners received awards across ten categories at the ceremony at Lancaster House in London, attended by the Minister for Crime, Policing and the Fire Service Kit Malthouse.
Minister for Crime, Policing and the Fire Service Kit Malthouse said:
Volunteers are highly valued members of the policing family.
They bring different skills to the police service and give up their time to serve the public and help protect their communities.
This year’s winners do a remarkable job, whether it is inspiring more women and ethnic minorities to join the police, supporting the vulnerable or making our streets safer.
Former BBC News presenter Sir Martyn Lewis hosted the event.
The winners are:
Ferrers Special Constabulary – Individual Award: Olaniyi Opaleye, Kent Police
Olaniyi Opaleye has served in Dartford for more than 20 years, connecting the police with churches, mosques, communities and inspiring others from under represented backgrounds to join the police.
Ferrers Special Constabulary – Team Award: Central Motorway Police Group, West Midlands Police and Staffordshire Police
The Central Motorway Police Group have assisted in the arrests of 700 people involved in vehicle crime thieves and have been supported the seizure of millions of pounds worth of stolen property, cash and drugs.
Ferrers Special Constabulary – Leadership Award: Laura Hart, Merseyside Police
Laura is the most senior female volunteer in Merseyside Police. She has led female officers on patrol and held conferences to increase the representation of women across the Special Constabulary.
Ferrers Volunteer Police Cadet – Individual Award: Hasan Hussain, West Midlands Police
Hasan has educated children about the life of Stephen Lawrence and passed down his legacy to the next generation by planting a tree in his memory.
Ferrers Volunteer Police Cadet – Team Award: Eden Valley Cadets, Cumbria Constabulary
The Eden Valley cadets have encouraged their community to talk about mental health with banners across the entire county. Starting in a small town, the team won the backing of a local charity, enabling them to have banners in every major town in Cumbria.
Ferrers Police Support Volunteer – Individual Award: Claire Hopkins, Avon and Somerset Constabulary
Claire has applied her unique understanding of modern slavery to produce a new template for frontline officers. This document has helped Avon and Somerset Constabulary identify more victims of modern slavery.
Ferrers Police Support Volunteer – Team Award: Streetwatch, Northamptonshire Police
Streetwatch is on patrol twice a week in Wellingborough to tackle fly tipping, car theft, drug dealing, burglary and anti-social behaviour. They also lead monthly litter picks which take more than 100 bags of rubbish off the streets.
Ferrers Employer Supported Policing Award – Fast Stream, Metropolitan Police
The Civil Service Fast Stream provides 15 days’ paid special leave each year for Special Constables’ training and duties and recognises the transferable skills it brings to the Civil Service.
Ferrers Technical Innovation Award – Greg Stevenson, Lincolnshire Police
Greg has used his skills and expertise to ensure Lincolnshire officers can capture and preserve digital evidence on the front line by developing a bespoke policing app for android phones.
Offices of Police and Crime Commissioners – Volunteer Individual or Team Award: Strive Volunteers, Greater Manchester Police
Strive Volunteers work with victims of domestic abuse across Manchester, visiting homes to support families at an early stage. They work in a non-judgemental way to tackle the root causes of conflict. They have made over 3000 contacts and have supported 840 individuals and families.