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Winners of BAWP 2021 recognised at ceremony

An 84-year-old police volunteer, a hate crime officer and a public order commander were among the winners of last night’s awards.

The Metropolitan Police stole the show with almost half of officers and staff crowned winners at the annual British Association of Women in Policing (BAWP) Awards coming from the force.

At a ceremony in Gloucestershire last night (19 October), Elizabeth Virgo, Metropolitan Police and PC Helen Lacey, North Wales Police came top in the Police Volunteer award.

84-year-old “inspiring” Ms Virgo is chair of the Westminster Independent Advisory Group and has advised numerous commanders through several change programmes policy changes and critical incidents.

Met PC Tara Duffy won the award for Community Service for her role as both the South East BCU Faith Engagement officer and Hate Crime Coordination officer.

PC Duffy “went above and beyond her duty” by maintaining existing links throughout the pandemic, holding regular zoom meetings with local faith leaders and continuing socially distanced visits to venues.

Met Chief Superintendent Karen Findley took home the Leadership award.

C/Supt Findley led the operational response to the London Bridge attack, managed and delivered the 2019 State visit of President Donald Trump and “delivered a successful policing plan” for Extinction Rebellion’s Autumn protests in London.

She was described “at the forefront of driving female representation within public order policing”

Other winners included:

PC Sarah Crawford, Gloucestershire Police – Bravery

Superintendent Michaela Kerr, West Midlands Police (Seconded to Metropolitan Police) and Michelle Foster, Northumbria Police – Coaching and Mentoring

PC Alice Hammick-Smith, Metropolitan Police - Excellence in Performance

Detective Chief Superintendent Tara McGovern, Metropolitan Police – Inspirational Award

Supertintendent Vicky Washington, Metropolitan Police - Lifetime Achievement

DC Lindsay Wallace, Police Scotland - Police Officer of the Year

Emma Henshaw, South East Regional Organised Crime Unit – Police Staff member of the Year

Chief Inspector Alison Woods, Merseyside Police – Special Recognition

In an after dinner speech Martin Hewitt, National Police Chiefs’ Council chair, said: “We collectively as a service have got to provide better output if we're going to rebuild people's trust in how we deal with violence against women and girls.”

He said the service should not accept the situation where if someone’s son and daughter decided to be a police officer, their son might have “more career opportunities than the other based simply on the fact one is a boy”.

“I'm not saying to anybody that you need to be flag waving and shouting, but what I really do think is all of us need to be really challenging to make sure that the way we're doing things is the way they ought to be. Because we have got to get to a place where it is better where everyone can come to work and be themselves and can move on based on their talent and their efforts regardless of any other characteristic.”

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