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Assaults on officers and staff remain above five year average

The number of assaults in Scotland has decreased for the first time since 2015, but the number remains high.

A total of 7,046 incidents were recorded in 2021/22 including officers and staff being punched, kicked and bitten during the course of their duties.

While the number has decreased by 251 incidents on the previous year, it remains 8.6 per cent higher than the five year average.

The figures have been released in the force’s Quarter 4 Performance Report which will be presented at the SPA Policing Performance Committee tomorrow.

Deputy Chief Constable Fiona Taylor said: “Being the victim of an assault can have a long lasting impact both physically and mentally. Police officers and staff are no different and violence directed towards them when they’re trying to keep people safe is deplorable.

"The wider impact can also affect the communities we serve if officers need time away from police duties to recover.

"It’s not simply part of the job, it’s not acceptable and it will not be tolerated.”

Police Scotland's taser uplift programme began in September 2021 with the aim to increase the number of STOs who carry taser from 500 to 2,000 across the next three years. 

The force are also developing plans for a national rollout of BWV across the next few years. 

This year, Police Scotland reached an agreement with the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service to introduce impact statements during sentencing. 

New guidance for officers and staff has also been published to support better reporting of health and safety incidents and assaults, as well as a data dashboard to enable in-depth analysis and identify repeat offenders.

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