Being stopped and searched can be an unpleasant experience, no matter the approach of the police officers involved. But if it’s felt that there has been unnecessary force or an inappropriate attitude, then we'd like to hear about it and, where necessary, act upon it. Likewise, we welcome any suggestions or positive comments you’d like to share.

Tell us about your experience of being stopped by the police

If you feel you’ve had an unpleasant or unsatisfactory experience, you may wish to make a formal complaint. You can do so if you think a police officer has behaved incorrectly or unfairly. For example, if you think an officer has:

  • been rude to you
  • used excessive force
  • abused your rights
  • arrested you unlawfully

All complaints are investigated and this can take time. 

To make a formal complaint and for more information about how complaints are investigated, read our complaints pages. If you've had a positive experience, you can offer us feedback.

Alternatives to a formal complaint

To raise an issue about something that has caused you concern, or was done well, it may be worth giving feedback. This might be particularly useful if you've witnessed something where, because you were not directly affected, you feel reluctant to make a formal contact, but you still feel unhappy, or pleased, about the way you've seen police officers behave.

There are options available for giving feedback.

You can use the stop and search community trigger process. This lets members of the community ask about how stop and search is used in their area and give us feedback. 

You can trigger the process in these ways:

The Force Stop and Search Working Group
Staffordshire Police Headquarters
Weston Road 
ST18 0YY

You'll need to provide enough information for us to assess your concerns. You can report issues anonymously if you wish.

If you have an ongoing complaint that's already being dealt with by Staffordshire Police, you should email the Performance and Standards Unit.

We'll refer your concerns to the senior officer who chairs the Force Working Group on stop and search, who'll assess the best method of addressing the issues you've raised. Your concerns may be passed to the Local Police Commander or to the Performance and Standards Unit and they may be the subject of a specific investigation, research or action.

If you provide contact details we'll give you feedback. All the issues reported via the community trigger process will be shared (personal data will be removed) with Local Policing Scrutiny Panels and the community for further openness.

How to get involved

Safer neighbourhood panels

Safer neighbourhood panels give members of the public the chance to work with us on local policing matters, including stop and search. Find out more about safer neighbourhood panels and how to join a panel