Essex Police Chief slams Met Police over “poaching” officers

TWO police and crime commissioners (PCC) have accused the Met Police of “poaching” officers from their forces because of recruitment problems. reports the BBC.

On Twitter, Matthew Scott, PCC for Kent, said the Met’s “failure to recruit” would be “felt by neighbouring forces”. 

Sussex PCC Katy Bourne accused the Met of putting its own targets “ahead of community safety”. 

The Metropolitan Police is trying to recruit 4,000 officers by March 2023. 

They are among eight PCCs who have written to London Mayor Sadiq Khan to voice “grave concerns” about the impact of the Met’s recruitment methods on other areas. 

Other signatories include Festus Akinbusoye, Roger Hirst, Donna Jones, David Lloyd, Lisa Townsend and Matthew Barber, the PCCs for Bedfordshire, Essex, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Surrey and the Thames Valley. 

Speaking to the BBC, Mr Scott called for the Met and the Mayor of London to put a stop to using bonus payments to lure experienced officers into London from other forces.

The Met said in a statement it was offering a “one-off financial incentive of £5,000” to “retain experienced officers and attract even more uniformed police constables to work in the capital”.

Mr Scott said: “They’re targeting our experienced officers to meet their own recruitment targets, not having any look at the system around them or the community safety impact that will have. 

“It’s selfish and they’re only doing it to meet their own recruitment targets whilst putting extra pressure on us.” 

In a post on social media, Ms Bourne said that the Met “don’t care” about the bigger picture, calling the force’s actions “disgusting”.

“We help each other,” she told the BBC, “we don’t do it at the expense of each other, we support each other. I think it’s absolutely disgraceful.”

The Metropolitan Police said it would not be commenting on the claims of either Mr Scott or Ms Bourne.

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