Proposed starting salary for new West Midlands Police recruits set at £22,000

With police recruitment planned to start in our area in 2014-15, West Midlands Police has proposed that the starting salary for new police officers will be £21,999 - the maximum possible under new regulations that could have allowed the salary to be set as low as £19,000.

Speaking about the proposal, which will be considered at next Tuesday's Strategic Policing and Crime Board, West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Bob Jones said, "I never supported Tom Winsor's recommendation to reduce police officers' starting salaries to £19,000.  We have to attract the best people into policing, and the starting salary should reflect that.  However, now that the other three forces in our region have all set a starting salary of £22,000 it would be perverse for salaries to be lower in the West Midlands, particularly as the challenges an officer is likely to face are greater here than in many other places.  I do not support differential salaries, but if anything salaries should be higher here than elsewhere.  We could not have a situation where the best and brightest candidates are lured away to other forces where the needs are lower.

"Recruitment will bring new blood into the Force, which is a priority as there won't be any officers under 25 unless recruiting starts again soon.  There are key skills and experience we need to equip the force for the challenges we face.  Furthermore, this is a great opportunity to bring in officers that better reflect the diverse and varied communities the police serve."

Bob Jones has proposed recruitment of 450 officers from 2014-15 over two years.  Recruiting is dependent on the approval of the Police and Crime Commissioner's budget proposals for 2014-15, and would commence after April 2014.

Tom Winsor is HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary and his review of police remuneration and conditions, in which he recommended a police starting salary of £19,000, is here