Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust (C&I) has been shortlisted for a ‘World Class Policing Award’ for a project run in partnership with the Metropolitan Police and Camden Council to support police officers who encounter traumatic experiences at work.
The pilot was the first of its kind in the force and there are now hopes it could be rolled out to other areas across the country.
Under the scheme, which took place between May and September 2019, police officers were trained in trauma-informed practice whilst being supported to have dedicated time and space for reflective supervision and processing traumatising experiences.
The project was called the Trauma Informed Supervision Pilot with Central North Gangs Unit, and it has been shortlisted for the ‘Employee and Officer Welfare Building Sustainable Policing’ award.
The need for the pilot came after a look into how police forces nationwide are facing increasing pressure to carry out their responsibilities to protect the public.
Following the scheme, partnerships between police, health and social care teams have improved and officers say they felt more supported when processing trauma, therefore enabling them to achieve more calm and positive interactions with members of the public.
The team will find out whether they have won the award at ceremony this month.
Dr Richard Grove, C&I Clinical Psychologist, said: “This is a great example of a multi-agency collaborative project – including input from Police, Social Care, Youth Justice and Health. We’re delighted to be shortlisted for such a prestigious award.”
“The officers who attended have said that the training and reflective space helped them to understand trauma and deal with challenging situations in a different way. They also told us that they recognise how reflecting on and processing one’s own traumatic experiences can be incredibly helpful in managing the stresses of the job. I have been really privileged to be part of such an innovative project.
Michael O’Connor, Youth Offending Service Manager for Camden at the time of the pilot, said: “For those of us fortunate enough to receive high quality, attuned and reflective supervision, we are aware of the link between this and our ability to provide consistent, emotionally regulated interventions. By providing trauma training and reflective supervision for police officers, we found that officers were open to new ways of thinking about their work and the impact it has on them.”
DCI Ralph Coates, Metropolitan Police, said: “The training has helped the police understand the effects of trauma on young people they work with, and themselves, enabling them to approach and manage situations differently. The Gangs Team is pleased to be recognised for the work and it goes to show innovative partnership working between statutory organisations to support public servants who have a very tough job to do.”
Pictured: Dr Richard Grove (left) and Michael O'Connor (right).