The importance of DOCO role within policing’s prevention agenda
Chair of the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) Martin Hewitt QPM has emphasised the importance of the Designing Out Crime Officers (DOCO) role within policing’s prevention agenda whilst addressing an audience of over 200 police DOCOs at the 2023 Secured by Design ATLAS national training conference and exhibition.
Martin, who is due to step down after four years as Chair of the NPCC at the end of this month, reflected on how the prevention agenda has progressed over recent years with the role of the DOCO also becoming much more significantly valued too.
“Prevention has always been important, but where we’ve placed prevention over the past few years is at the centre of everything we’re doing, which is absolutely fantastic”, Martin said. “I’m really pleased that within the last year we in the NPCC have taken the decision to set up a coordinating committee specifically focused on prevention. That is really moving us forward in all of the work that we do, not only to what we’re doing in the NPCC but evermore in the last few years in the minds of government and what the government wants to achieve.
“Prevention must be prioritised to keep people safe. DOCOs are at the operational end of how policing delivers prevention, and I would like to pass on my gratitude to all of you for all that you do and all of the people that you are keeping safe by what you do”.
In October 2021 the National Police Chiefs’ Council designated the role of the DOCO as a specialist role within policing, with all DOCOs required to complete mandatory Continuous Professional Development.
Martin was appointed Chair of the NPCC in April 2019, having served as a Vice-Chair from 2015. He began his policing career with Kent Police in 1993, transferring to the Metropolitan Police Service in 2005. As an Assistant Commissioner for five years, Martin led frontline and local policing, specialist crime and professional standards.
Chief Constable Gavin Stephens will be the new Chair of the National Police Chiefs’ Council from April 2023.
The Secured by Design (SBD) ATLAS national training conference and exhibition saw over 200 DOCOs from across the UK come together for a series of workshops and presentations, as part of their annual CPD to update themselves in their knowledge of new legislation, crime trends, security methodologies and other relevant subjects.