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Coronavirus (COVID-19): the policing response and what you need to know

Officer Mental Health and Organisational Support

Date of request: January 11, 2021
Reference: 040/21


My request relates to how the mental health of your police officers is managed. Specifically, I would like the following information:

  • How many police officers have taken leave (of any length) due to anxiety, depression, PTSD, stress, or any other identified mental health condition. I would like these statistics broken down by month, between the period March 1st 2020 and today’s date.
  • A description of internal procedures the police force has in place in order to help and support police officers suffering from mental health conditions.
  • A description of any changes to internal procedures that the police force has made in order to help and support police officers suffering from mental health conditions since March 1st, 2020.

If data has not been collected up to and including today’s date, please provide me with data between the period March 1st 2020, and the latest date available.


Please find below a breakdown of officers which have taken leave between 1st March 2020 and 31st December 2020, where one of the following reasons were listed as their ‘reason for absence’;

  • Anxiety Stress Psy
  • Work related Stress
  • Alcohol Drug Depend
  • Anxiety Nervousness
  • Depression
  • Eating Disorders
  • Insomnia
  • Phobias
  • Shock
  • Stress
  • Mental Illness
  • Bereavement
Month Headcount Month Headcount
March 52 August 38
April 36 September 42
May 32 October 42
June 28 November 49
July 39 December 39

Please note that should an officer have more than one mental health absence in a month, they will only be counted once. Additionally, if an officer’s period of sickness spanned more than one month, they will be counted in each month they were absent.

With regards to questions two and three, the following resources and support is in place for all employees:

  • EAP – introduction of Healthy Advantage App – able to download on all work mobile phones
  • Sister company provided on line cognitive behaviour modules relating to mental and physical health and wellbeing
  • National Police Wellbeing Service
  • Provision of online programme, seminars/training and resources specifically promoting ‘I’ resilience, sleep deprivation, managing stress.
  • Ongoing regular (6 monthly) psychological support for specific roles

Since March 2020

  • Introduction and scheduled roll out of Mental Health Awareness for all line managers and Senior Leaders through online programmes
  • 3 month pilot schedule for Mental Health first aiders in comms and custody.
  • Review of existing health and wellbeing platforms
  • Reviewed our internal H&W resources and services – including accessibility both internally and externally
  • Reviewed our communications
  • Reviewed our related policies and process to ensure flexibility and understanding by line manager/individual built in
  • New Ways of Working including hints tips to get the most out of the technology we have and the resources available to us.
  • Promotion of Performance Review and reviewing objectives to ensure SMART etc

In addition to those mentioned above, there are also internal Staff Associations that officers can reach out to alongside external charities, independents, NHS and other emergency services that officers are able to contact.

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