Force gets ‘Special’ service with help of volunteers
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Over 3,000 hours have been given by volunteers from the Special Constabulary to help bolster Staffordshire Police’s efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic.
One of the 200+ Specials who has stepped up to help during this critical time is Special Sergeant Matt Hickinbottom.
Matt, based in Wombourne, was furloughed from his full-time job and has given over 100 hours of his own time to the force instead.
The 42-year-old, who has been involved in policing for 18 years, said: “I was furloughed from my full-time job so we’ve all stepped up to help. In times of national need, this is what we’ve promised to do.
“I’ve got the time available now and I don’t see that there’s a better way to use it. I’d rather be helping the community.”
Matt has attached himself to a shift in South Staffordshire Neighbourhood Policing Team and is working alongside full-time officers to walk the beat.
He added: “We’re also looking at beauty spots and advising people to go home and help save lives.”
Almost 3,100 hours have been given by the Special Constabulary since the lockdown was introduced on 23 March.
Tony Athersmith, Chief Officer of Specials, said: “The work that the Specials do is absolutely invaluable and they are all a fantastic asset to the policing family.
“In this unprecedented time, they have never been so vital to us and I’m humbled by the response we’ve had from all of them.
“They’ve attached themselves to shifts by patrolling beauty spots, joined response cops and help to engage with the community.
“Every single one of them has put themselves forward and got stuck in to help during this unnerving time. They should all be proud of themselves.”