More female police officers recruited

More women are being recruited as police officers in Lincolnshire and Humberside, figures reveal, as male domination in the ranks continues to subside.

More women are being recruited as police officers in Humberside and Lincolnshire.

While the Government says there is more work to be done to make forces representative, campaigners say a rise in female officers will help lead to public confidence in policing.

Home Office data shows Lincolnshire Police took on 120 new officers in 2020-21, including 42 who were women (35 percent), while Humberside Police took on 160 new officers in the same period, including 66 women (41 percent).

The female recruits will go a little way toward balancing the gender ranks among the force's police officers.

Separate Home Office figures show 31 percent of officers in Lincolnshire were women in March last year, up from 29 percent four years before.

Thirty-six percent of officers in Humberside were women in March last year, up from 32 percent four years before.

Across the 43 police forces in England and Wales, that proportion rose to 32 percent last year from 30 percent in 2016.

The Home Office said it had used targeted advertising and provided support to candidates in a bid to attract more women for police officer roles.

A spokesperson said: "It is excellent that more women are deciding to go into this inspiring career, and that more women are also represented at senior roles in police forces.

“We are aware, however, there is more work to be done which is why the Government continues to work closely with police forces to ensure their workforces are representative, in terms of gender, ethnicity and socio-economic backgrounds.”

Women's Aid, a charity supporting female victims of violence, said it was pleased with the rise in female officer numbers, adding the death of Sarah Everard and subsequent charging of a serving male police officer with her murder had damaged confidence in policing.

Farah Nazeer, chief executive, said: "Women make up half the population and therefore it is good to see the police working towards this level of representation."

She added: "After such a tragic event [the death of Sarah Everard], public confidence in policing drops and so the increase in female officers is one way to get that confidence back.

"The power of the police depends on public approval for its existence, actions and behaviour. If police forces are not representative, public approval will lesson."

Martin Hewitt, chairman of the National Police Chiefs' Council, also welcomed the influx of new policing recruits.

But he added: "There is much more to do to build a workforce that is truly representative of the communities we serve."

The new recruits were hired as part of a Government commitment to add 20,000 officers to forces in England and Wales by March 2023.