Keith Prince AM: Retired police need proper support
Every day London's brave police officers put themselves at risk to protect all of us. It's shameful that they are increasingly being abused and assaulted for doing their job and keeping our city safe.
I am greatly concerned by the Mayor's failure to keep police officers safe. Instead of backing the police, Sadiq Khan regularly sides with protesters and had a tin ear in response to officers' calls for protective equipment such as spit guards and Tasers. However, it's not just serving officers that Khan is failing; those who have retired have been forgotten and left without the support and help they need.
A recent survey by the National Association of Retired Police Officers revealed that nearly a quarter of retired officers believed they might have PTSD. More than half admitted that being a member of the police affected their mental well-being. And shockingly, almost 85% said they had not been offered or accessed support for their emotional well-being concerns.
The injuries and mental health issues faced by police officers do not disappear when they retire, but it seems that many are not receiving the help and support they need when they leave the service.
That's why the Conservative Group in the London Assembly tabled a motion calling on the Mayor and the Met to review the support they provide to retired officers and come back with a plan on how to help those who need it.
I am pleased to say the Assembly backed our call, and I hope that it will push the Mayor to act. Londoners are eternally grateful for police officers' courage and sacrifice, so it's only right that the Mayor and the Met have a plan in place to help them after they retire.
Article by Keith Prince AM first published in the Romford Recorder.