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Sussex’s Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne recognised in Queen’s Birthday Honours for 2019

Sussex PCC Katy Bourne has been awarded an Officer of the British Empire (OBE) for public and political services.

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Since being elected in 2012, Katy Bourne has used her role to bring police and communities together to better understand and address local policing issues.

She arrived with a particular interest in tackling domestic abuse, sexual violence and stalking, bringing them to the forefront of policing in Sussex and beyond.

Working on the basis that every citizen has a right to feel safe in Sussex and to be policed with the consent of the public, her priorities for Sussex Police focus on strengthening local policing, working with communities and partners to keep the county safe, protecting the vulnerable and improve access to justice for victims and witnesses.

On the announcement Katy said she felt very honoured, adding:

“This is a tremendous endorsement of the role of Police and Crime Commissioners and testament to the hard work of the team in my office who support me.

“I would like to thank them and also every single police officer, PCSO and police staff member in Sussex for working so tirelessly to keep us all safe.”

Chief Constable Giles York congratulated her on behalf of the force, saying:

“Katy Bourne has been a consistent force for good since first being elected as the PCC for Sussex; she has always been a voice of challenge and support for the force and championing the needs of the public and those who struggle to have their voice heard.

“On behalf of all of us at Sussex Police we offer our congratulations on such well-earned recognition in being awarded an OBE.”

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Grab your headset and help someone in their time of need across Sussex

Today sees the launch of Sussex Police’s latest round of contact officer recruitment.

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When the going gets tough, contact officers are there to help. Whether it’s taking a report of a missing person, responding to a burglary or supporting someone in crisis, our contact officers play a vital role in helping keep our communities safe, identifying and protecting the most vulnerable and preventing harm.

Chief Superintendent Paul Betts who leads the Force Control and Command Centre (FCCCD) said:

“We were thrilled with the response to our recruitment campaign earlier this year and are delighted to reopen again today. Our contact officers are an integral part of our front-line, supporting us as we keep Sussex safe and feeling safe, and our recent recruitment has allowed us to provide a better service to the public already.”

“Our contact officers are the essential calm reassurance in someone’s time of need. Whether it’s receiving a call from the scene of a road traffic accident, taking details of a missing person from a concerned relative or responding to online reports of crime; our contact officers are empathetic, supportive and informative.

“It’s a challenging role, no two enquiries are the same, yet it’s one which offers a great sense of pride as we help make a difference, together.”

Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said:

“Contact handlers are the first port of call for people reporting crimes and needing urgent police help, so they need great listening skills, empathy, professionalism and patience. Fortunately Sussex Police continues to receive a very high standard of applicants wanting to join the team and I am sure the next intake will be no different.

“These are essential, unique and fulfilling roles within Sussex Police and I look forward to meeting the new contact handlers once they have been recruited and their training starts.”

Being a contact officer is not your typical nine to five call centre role, ideally you’ll need to be able to work shifts; including nights, weekends and bank holidays. Flexible working is available Monday through to Sunday, from 08:00 to 13:00, or as a job share on the full shift pattern.

You will deal with emergency 999 calls, non-emergency 101 calls, online reporting and social media. Asking the right questions, making threat and risk assessments, listening for vital details and recording information; all while monitoring two screens are vital skills. You will need to be patient, decisive, dynamic and compassion to provide the very best service to the public.

Those who are interested in a career within our FCCCD as a contact officer are encouraged to attend one of the recruitment tours being held at Police Headquarters (Lewes) throughout the application window. You can book a place on a tour here,

Chief Superintendent Betts added:

“If you want to know what life is truly like as a contact officer, then we invite you to come and experience it first-hand on one of our behind the scenes tours. You’ll get to listen into some of the calls you could deal with and meet some of the people who work in the contact and command centre. It’s the perfect opportunity to find out if you’ve got what it takes to work in this demanding, yet incredibly fulfilling roles.”

As the first point of contact for many, engaging with people of all ages and backgrounds, we’re looking for those who can build rapport quickly, show empathy and communicate clearly at all times. Enquiries can include some of the most difficult situations you can think of so compassion and resilience are also important. If you can work under pressure, problem-solve and think quickly then this could be the career for you.

To apply, visit their website

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