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Trauma Resilience in UK Policing

About the research

The Trauma Resilience in UK Policing project explores how to better support the brain's ability to process trauma exposure and maintain resilience in contemporary operational policing. The project is sponsored by Police Care UK and works in collaboration with the Department of Sociology. Together, we are providing practical techniques, training material and evidence-based insight to bring real effective change to trauma management for police officers, staff and their families.

The project has been reported on by BBC News, BBC Inside out, Channel 4 Dispatches and as well as featuring in the national press, including newspapers, digital coverage and radio throughout 2019. The study has also been selected for the Cambridge Research Evaluation Framework (REF) 2021 and nominated for the Vice Chancellor’s Research Impact and Engagement Awards 2019.

 

What's been going on...

Read more at: Establishing the evidence base: 'Policing: The Job & The Life' Survey (2018)

Establishing the evidence base: 'Policing: The Job & The Life' Survey (2018)

The UK's first survey to assess trauma management and working conditions in UK policing engaged with 18,175 officers and staff across the UK between October and December 2018. Headline findings set the UK’s first Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) prevalence rate in policing at 1 in 5 and the world’s first Complex PTSD rate in a working population (12%).

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Read more at: Providing reliable and practical support: training trauma processing techniques

Providing reliable and practical support: training trauma processing techniques

​A feasibility study of post-incident trauma processing techniques was conducted between March 2018 - March 2019 with over 70 new recruits at Greater Manchester Police after the arena attack. Findings showed the techniques to be teachable and immediately effective in increasing sense of ease and safety around difficult incidents and recall.

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Read more at: Understanding extreme and atypical trauma exposure: qualitative research of high-risk roles

Understanding extreme and atypical trauma exposure: qualitative research of high-risk roles

Extensive qualitative research (i.e. focus groups, consultation and job shadowing) was undertaken through Autumn 2018 and into Spring 2019 with SO15 & Counter-Terrorism, emergency call handling, online Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and firearms units. We uncovered how individuals develop unique skills and coping mechanisms to process trauma exposure and provide recommendations for training, assessment and wellbeing support for those in similar high-risk roles.

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Read more at: Validating trauma exposure in policing: creating a police-specific traumatic events checklist

Validating trauma exposure in policing: creating a police-specific traumatic events checklist

Everyday trauma exposure is becoming increasingly accepted as part of contemporary policing, yet there are no means of quantifying it. The final component of this study is to produce the UK’s first police-specific trauma exposure events checklist to enable forces to do just that.

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Latest news

Dr Jess Miller in Channel 4 Dispatches: how do police officers cope with repeated assaults?

1 July 2019

Our lead researcher, Dr Jess Miller, was interviewed by former policeman Dan Clark-Neal for Channel 4 Dispatches .

Policing: The Job & The Life Survey hits the headlines

9 May 2019

Initial findings from the survey (funded by Police Care UK) hit headline news on 9th May across the UK.

Trauma Resilience Project on BBC Inside Out and Sussex Breakfast News

28 December 2018

BBC's Inside Out on January 28th covered much of the Trauma Resilience in UK Policing project.