Response officer in Camborne
I have been a police officer for 14 years divided between Wiltshire Police and Devon and Cornwall Police, working mostly on response.
My journey into policing came as a surprise even to me as I happened to be talking to someone who was carrying out some work at our house when we began talking about careers and what I wanted to do for the future. At the time I was working at a retail store, where the prospects of progression and better pay were not very promising. A suggestion was made that I spoke to the man's son, who was a police officer, and he would tell me about the job and if I felt it was for me then I could apply.
The officer kindly visited me at home and spoke to me about a career in poling. It was due to this introduction that I took the jump and submitted my application. It has changed my life for the better, as I have found myself doing a role I enjoy and have made a lot of friends.
When I embarked on the application process and the assessments, I was surprised by the lack of diversity in the candidates and assessors. On joining, the same has continued with percentages of less than five in both forces of ethnic representation.
It clearly shows that neither of the forces are representative of the areas they serve, and the majority of the population appear surprised when an ethnic minority officer turns up or walks past them. It has on occasion been a good reaction and on others an unpleasant encounter as the racial divide gets exhibited due to the colour of the officer attending. It is a job at the end of the day and will do it to the best of my abilities without any bias of the individuals involved.
When a story about racial discrimination makes national headlines, it creates a reaction to many people who are either directly or indirectly involved. I believe that in this day and age all humans should coexist and appreciate each other as no one has the ability to change how they came into existence.
As Black history continues to be celebrated in many countries worldwide, it is worth recognising that we are all here and with no likelihood of people going anywhere, let’s all live together.