New police Code of Ethics published

Date published: 06 February 2024

A new Code of Ethics for policing has been published by the College of Policing. Published on 24 January, the 2024 Code of Ethics replaces the 2014 code and has fewer and better explained principles, clearer expectations and practical advice, and clarity on when expectations are not met.

Supporting national and local work on the Police Race Action Plan; Violence Against Women and Girls; Diversity, Equality and Inclusion; and Professionalism, the new code puts a renewed emphasis on fairness; challenging the unacceptable; listening and responding to communities; the need for continuous improvement; reflection and learning; openness, honesty and candour; and welfare - by encouraging police employees to act with courage; respect and empathy; and in service to the public.

Assistant Chief Officer Charlotte Layton, Director of Human Resources, said: “The new Code of Ethics is a really important product both in helping police officers and staff be the best they can be and building public trust and confidence.

“Whilst we are taking steps to ensure GMP employees understand the code and what is expected of them, we are also encouraging our communities to familiarise themselves with it, so they know what to expect in their contact with police.

“As a force, we are really committed to delivering outstanding service and understand that the public’s perception of quality is heavily reliant on our officers acting with courage, fairness, respect and empathy.”

The Code of Ethics can be viewed here:

Additionally, Professor Dame Robina Shah has been appointed as the new independent chair of the Greater Manchester Ethics Committee, which looks into ethical policing decisions.

When first established in 2014 the Greater Manchester Ethics Committee was the first of its type in the country due to its wide-ranging remit and GMP’s commitment to giving access to their systems and people, all with the aim of building trust and public confidence in policing.

The committee decides which issues it wants to consider, as well has having issues referred in by both GMP and the Deputy Mayor. Members of the public can raise issues with the committee - but it does not consider individual complaints about police.

The committee considers both broad thematic issues - such as discrimination, safe drug use, and surveillance - and practical day-to-day issues, such as the use of body-worn cameras by police officers.

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