Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) inspire confidence on the streets of West Mercia. They strive to make our communities safer and stronger yet perform one of the most demanding roles in the modern police force.
PCSOs can't make arrests and they don’t carry handcuffs or a baton. They rely on their ability to understand and communicate with some of the most challenging people in some of the most difficult situations.
As a result we're looking for special qualities.
Have you got what it takes?
Put yourself in the shoes of a PCSO. These are some of the issues you may have to resolve:
How would you deal with a group of binge drinkers dancing in the street?
What would you do to re-build the confidence of an elderly couple who were burgled last week?
How would you handle young people using a shopping centre as an indoor cycle track?
PCSOs work within neighbourhood policing teams helping to solve local issues by getting out in the community, meeting people and offering advice and support to people who live and work in the neighbourhood.
PCSOs deal with minor offences and support front-line policing. They do not make arrests, conduct interviews, deal with prisoners or investigate serious crime. PCSOs go out on solo patrols which means they will be expected to walk their areas alone.
What can you expect?
As a PCSO you can expect to:
go on highly visible solo foot and cycle patrols
support Community Policing Teams to solving local problems
make house visits to gather intelligence and offer public reassurance after minor crimes or anti-social behaviour
get involved with key people in the community, such as community, religious and business leaders work with Community Watch, Neighbourhood Watch, Business Watch, Pub Watch, Farm Watch and Horse Watch schemes
protect crime scenes until police officers arrive
collect CCTV evidence
provide low-level crime prevention and personal safety advice
carry out low-level missing person enquiries
act as professional witnesses, attending court when needed
support crime prevention
engage with youths
interact with schools
support the mobile police station
Education and qualities
You will need GCSE A-C (4-9) or equivalent in English and Maths, and applicants will possess the right qualities, such as:
a confident, level-headed, positive and mature manner
the ability to deal with difficult people and situations
to be sensitive but objective
good communication and listening skills
good team-working skills
stamina for long periods of foot patrol
skills to deal with all types of people, some of whom may be drunk, hostile or upset
to be accurate when completing paperwork
an appreciation of the confidential nature of police work
Health and fitness
PCSOs may encounter stressful situations, trauma, physical confrontation and work long hours on a variable shift pattern.
They need to be resilient enough to cope with the demands and pressures of the role so applicants should be in good health mentally and physically.
You will undergo a medical examination to ensure you meet the health standards required, including eyesight.
Are you eligible to apply?
Personal (All must apply)
You are an EEA or Swiss National
You've lived in the UK continuously for the last 3 years
You’re at 18 years old
You hold a full UK manual driving licence (with 6 points or less on it)
You don't have any tattoos or piercings which cause offence, are excessive or deemed unprofessional
You’re not registered bankrupt or subject to CCJs or IVAs (IVAs will be considered on a case by case basis)
Any previous criminal convictions or cautions (including those spent), fixed penalty notices, traffic offences or any involvement with the police must be declared and they may affect your application
What’s so good about being a PSCO?
a sense of achievement from helping to create a strong community
no two days are ever the same
a diverse group of colleagues
people get to know you, talk to you and share their concerns with you
spend re time outdoors by patrolling on foot and by bike
receive a good rate of pay
satisfaction of knowing that regular officers have extra time to deal with more serious crimes
West Mercia Police values diversity and recognises that people with a variety of skills, attitudes and experiences, from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures, bring fresh ideas and perspectives to policing. We are committed to fostering a workforce that is representative of the communities we serve, and encourage individuals from under-represented groups and communities to join us. To find out more, read about how our Positive Action programme supports applications from all under-represented groups, encompassing gender, people from Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME), disability and sexual orientation, or email our Positive Action team.
Biometrics clearance (DBA and fingerprints taken at assessment)
Professional Standards Questionnaire (completed at assessment)