National Policing Lead for Workforce Management, Chief Constable Mike Cunningham, said:

"Every person in society shares an interest in seeing the best possible leaders in policing. So it is right to review how we attract the brightest and best, including how we can bring more women and minority ethnic leaders into senior roles. Forces already have police staff in senior leadership positions in fields such as HR, finance and IT. These proposals will see the College of Policing develop standards for fast-tracking promising entrants to operational policing at Constable level, for bringing in outstanding candidates from outside policing at Superintendent level, and for recruiting Chief Constable candidates from abroad.

"As a profession, policing has nothing to fear from being open to these ideas. Police leaders at every level can be proud that crime is down, while the Home Secretary has hailed policing as the 'model public service' for the way in which it has responded to the cuts. There is every reason for confidence that the abundant leadership talent within policing can compete with the very best from outside.

"The advantages of first hand day to day experience of operational policing to those in command roles is not underestimated. It is also a reality that opportunities for entry to senior roles will be fewer as police forces contract to suit budgets. The work led by the College will examine these challenges and the potential benefits to policing."

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