Safer Travel Police Team has special new recruits

Safer Travel SpecialsTHE Safer Travel Police Team has welcomed twelve new Special Constables to help make travel on public transport in the West Midlands safer.

The new recruits were sworn in at a special ceremony on Saturday 15 February and will be the first Specials to have a dedicated role in policing the trains, buses and trams of the region.

The volunteer constables have been jointly recruited by West Midlands Police and British Transport Police to join the team, which deals with crime and anti-social behaviour on public transport.

The twelve recruits have completed their training and were sworn in as Special Constables at a ceremony at the Safer Travel Command Centre at Centro House in Birmingham. They will then join their regular police colleagues in the Safer Travel Police Team on patrol.

The new recruits are both men and women and mixed ages with a variety of day jobs, including full time students and bus drivers.

The Safer Travel Police Team carries out regular reassurance and intelligence-led patrols on public transport and organises regular operations to target criminals who operate on public transport.

Officers also work closely with youngsters about the importance of good behaviour on the public transport network.

Special Constables have the same powers as regular officers and wear the same uniform. They are given all the necessary training to enable them to carry out their duties. The hours are flexible but specials are required to work a minimum of four hours each week.

Inspector Lee Gordon, in charge of the Safer Travel Team, said: "Special Constables make a valuable contribution to local policing and provide an important link with the community. The new recruits will help to provide a visible reassurance for people using trains, trams and buses.

Now their initial training is complete, they will be given on-the-job training and will then be able to patrol on their own, helping to reduce crime and making the travelling public feel safe and secure."

The recruitment honours an election commitment made by West Midlands Police & Crime Commissioner Bob Jones to make public transport safer in the West Midlands by bolstering the force's pool of volunteer officers.

He said: "Special Constables are remarkable volunteers who give their time for their community and are vital in supporting local policing. These new recruits will be a fantastic addition to the Safer Travel Team in helping to protect the travelling community within the West Midlands."

The Safer Travel Police Team falls under the Safer Travel Partnership, which brings officers form West Midlands and British Transport Police together to work closely with staff from transport authority Centro and transport operators with the aim of making travel on trains, trams and buses in the region even safer.

For more information see here.