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CoP joins policing podcast revolution

Crime podcasters have a new competitor, with the College of Policing set to begin broadcasting.

The College of Policing is joining the audio revolution by starting its own podcast series.

From Sunday, it will be sharing a monthly episode for everyone with an interest in policing, crime reduction and criminal justice.

Its experts will be discussing policing during the pandemic, what makes a good cop and insights into digital policing.

Hosted by former officer Rob Flanagan, the professionally-produced episodes can be downloaded like any other on the major media websites.

And the first episode will focus on officer safety with contributors including Dave Brewster of the police wellbeing service Oscar Kilo.

Another guest Paul Quinton, College of Policing evidence and evaluation advisor, explained why the issue had been chosen.

He said: “We found that 88% – so that's pretty much nine in every 10 police officers – have said at some point during their career they've been assaulted, which is a staggering number.”

Ahead of the broadcast, the College said: “This topic is important to officers at every level of policing and has become especially prominent since 2020 following the tragic death of PC Andrew Harper and his wife's campaign for Andrew's Law.

“The episode will talk to those directly impacted and affected as a result of police assaults. The podcast will also share how policing bodies across the sector are united in bringing in a new range of measures designed to protect police officers and staff through increased support and wellbeing initiatives.”

It’s part of the College’s response to feedback from officers that it isn’t accessible and only used by people as a resource for initial training and promotion exams.

The critical findings were laid out in a review published earlier this month but new Chief Executive Andy Marsh had already made clear when he took over last year that the College needed to offer more to frontline officers.

He also wants the College to develop more resources that can be accessed any time to help officers on shift patterns.

The College has already revamped its website and developed more online learning modules.

Its podcast is part of a fast-growing media trend. There are now more than 850,000 online broadcasts with more than 48 million episodes to choose from.

Policing is a huge topic for listeners inlcuding true crimes, historical issues and campaigns. The case of Daniel Morgan, who was murdered in South London and is still subject of official reviews, was kept in the public eye by a podcast supported by his family.

Senior officers have already given it the thumbs up.

Temporary Chief Supt of Kent Police, Amanda Tillotson said: “Rob Flanagan has done an excellent job here.”

The Police Superintendents’ Association said the initiative is “a great way to hear some new insights and stories from people at the heart of policing”.

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