I think that about 50% of new recruits are female. Has anybody in the forward planning department actually recognised that the majority of these new female recruits end up in operational policing in the early stages of their careers? Alot of them also get pregnant.
Corporate risk assessments state that expectant mothers should be removed from operational roles straight away. Thereafter any public contact should be strictly limited to things like partner meetings. In reality this means that an officer is lost from the streets for about a year, assuming they return after maternity leave. No replacement, unless they are temporarily removed from your strength. This is also the same for PCSO's.
I am full of praise for those woman officers with children who manage to juggle the demands of family life with a police career. I don't know how they do it, especially those on response. If the political diversity quota gurus want a police service visibly reflective of society in percentage terms then perhaps they should be recruiting 60% females, because alot of the present 50% disappear pretty quickly.
I just got my team back together after being short all year. This lasted about 4 weeks. I've now lost another one for a year. There is no way I can achieve results without staff to do the work, so I have decided to move on and look for another role elsewhere.
I don't want this to sound like a sexist rant, it's not, I've contributed to the problem myself in the past. It's an operational rant at my level because my team is now ineffective and no jiggling in work force planning will take place to change the situation.