Police Chiefs ask employers of special constables to allow extra paid leave

apprentice police

Police chiefs have today asked employers to give workers who volunteer as special constables paid leave during the coronavirus crisis.

The National Police Chiefs’ Council say the move will boost the number of volunteers available, with police ranks expected to be depleted by illness and self-isolation in the coming months.

Special constables have the full powers of a paid officer and there are 10,000 of them in England and Wales. Police expect to be placed under “great strain” during the national crisis caused by the pandemic.

Other measures police chiefs are considering include making it easier for retired officers to rejoin. Martin Hewitt, chair of the NPCC, said: Our Special Constables play a vital role in the police service, a service which will be placed under great strain over the coming months.

We appreciate that this would be placing a further burden on businesses who are already suffering the economic impact of this virus, and we do not make this appeal lightly.

Businesses who are able to release their staff to undertake these important roles will be supporting the national effort against Covid-19 by helping us to maintain services and keep people safe.

This is part of our contingency planning for the coming weeks and months.

Forces are considering how to manage up to 25% of officers being absent at any one time, include extending shifts to 12 hours.