The world’s first ever Disability in Policing Conference was held today (Wednesday 5th June) hosted by the Disabled Police Association (DPA) in Hertfordshire.
Formed in July 2012, the Association welcomed members of the police family from across the country who live with or care for loved ones with disabilities.
The event, with the theme ‘Enable not Disable’, was held at The Fielder Centre in Hatfield and sponsored by Police Mutual and Police Care UK.
It was also supported by the National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC), Hertfordshire Chief Constable Charlie Hall and Hertfordshire Police and Crime Commissioner David Lloyd.
DPA president Dr Rob Gurney, said: “The aim of the event was to bring together those who work within policing and live with disabilities to provide support and advice as well as share good practice in relation to supporting our officers and staff in the workplace”
The DPA is a national body that represents disability support networks within police forces across the UK. Its main aim is to promote equality of opportunity for disabled people who work for police forces.
The event’s guest speakers were Permanent Secretary at the Home Office Sir Philip Rutnam, who spoke about his role as the Civil Service Disability Champion, and CEO of The Police Dependents’ Trust Gill Scott-Moore, who spoke to guests about the work of the charity in supporting ill or injured people.
There were also contributions from NPCC lead for Disability Janette McCormick QPM, Hertfordshire Assistant Chief Constable Nathan Briant, Vice-President of the DPA Simon Nelson from Sussex and Vice-President of the Police Superintendents Association Ian Wylie.
Rob said: “Today’s event provided some really positive learning outcomes and showed the valuable contribution that those with disabilities make to policing up and down the country.
A surprise addition to the event was the presentation of several awards to police forces and individuals who have influenced and influenced the disability agenda within Policing which again was a first ever.. These included the following:
Most improved Disability Network
Winners – Merseyside Disability Support Network
Positive Cultural Change
Winners – West Midlands Police
Outstanding Force Contribution to Disability
Winners – Sussex Police
President’s Award Outstanding Individual Contribution to Disability in Policing
Winner – Anna Button – West Yorkshire Police
Source – Disabled Police Association