What does your full-time job entail?
My job entails managing a team of up to 15 people. I oversee the processing of menswear orders for a large retail corporation and make sure they are accurate, on time and of high quality.
What made you apply to become a Special Constable?
I've always wanted to join the police since I was a child but I enjoy my current job. Being able to do both was a great way for me to see if it the job was right for me and if I was right for the job. I've also always had a strong moral compass, so the role was a natural move for me.
How did you find the training? Was there anything you were nervous about and how did you find it?
I loved training, it was great fun. I made some amazing friends on the course. We became a mini family and we all still speak regularly now. The training was difficult as there is a huge amount of self-learning and the time commitment is high. However, when you get through that, you are set up to regularly commit time on a monthly basis. The role plays did make me nervous but the training team were really good and the role plays were actually a huge part in our learning so I'm glad we did them. The best part of the whole training was PST (personal safety training). That was so much fun!
Where do you work?
I'm based in Watford and I'm assigned to an Response team. We respond to emergency 999 calls and I generally work with the same specials and regular officers which is great.
How do you find the balance between work, personal life and being a Special Constable?
It can sometimes be a struggle and it can be tiring but I've never regretted doing a shift. The rewards outweigh the negatives. My work schedule is consistent which makes it easier and my friends and family understand that it is another job for me and are understanding when I need to work. My partner is also incredibly supportive and is flexible with our plans to fit around my shifts. He even knows my shift pattern!
Do you find the skills you've gained as a Special have helped your career, and vice versa?
Definitely, one of the main skills I've developed is being able to deal with difficult conversations. Working in a retail head office and leading a team means that I often have conversations that can be difficult. Since working as a Special I've readjusted my view on what a difficult conversation really is, having had some on duty, which has meant I'm far more confident and not fazed at work…
What do you like about being a Special Constable?
I love being part of a vital team that really makes a difference. Being able to do something for society, as well as myself, is really rewarding. You're also not distinguishable between a Special and a regular police officer, and that really makes you feel a part of the team and it's easier to execute the job.
What has been your most memorable incident?
This is difficult as I've learnt a lot from every incident and shift I have had. I think my first arrest will always be the most memorable as it's the first time you are executing a ‘power' or right that you've never had before. Detaining a person and taking them to custody is a huge decision that you don't take lightly so I think every arrest will be memorable in a way.