National LGBT+ Police Network

National LGBT+ Police Network logo.
National LGBT+ Police Network logo.

The National LGBT+ Police Network represents the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans staff associations across England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Channel Islands, both within the police service and in partner agencies such as the National Crime Agency, Civil Nuclear Constabulary and Ministry of Defence. Our aim is to support the officers and staff throughout their careers by creating working environments where they can thrive and feel able to be their true selves at work.

Support we provide

The Network takes a lead on all issues relevant to the LGBT+ community within the police service, promoting inclusiveness and equal opportunities for all. The support we offer both serving officers and potential recruits includes:

  • Helping to establish local and regional LGBT+ support networks for all our officers and staff
  • National representation for local and regional networks on shared issues
  • Initiatives and guidance to make sure police forces are both representative and inclusive of the LGBT+ community

If you’re thinking of joining the police, we can put you in contact with your preferred force’s local LGBT+ support network.

Officers smiling to camera through Pride picture frame.

Questions you might have

It’s natural to have questions when thinking about becoming a police officer. The LGBT+ Police Network is here to ensure that your sexual orientation and gender identity will always be respected within your role. Take a look through our FAQs below.

What happens if I experience homophobic/transphobic/biphobic behaviour or other prejudices at work?

The police service is committed to protecting the health and wellbeing of all its officers and does not accept any form of discrimination. There are robust disciplinary processes and support mechanisms in place to ensure all officers are protected, including wellbeing support and independent investigation of complaints.

Will declaring that I’m from the LGBT+ community impact my application in any way?

Absolutely not. The police service actively welcomes people from all backgrounds, cultures and communities because it’s vital we represent the people we serve.

I’m not sure my personality fits with being a police officer. Will I fit in?

The police service is made up of all sorts of different personalities, that’s what makes it so special. And we need that to be able to connect with the different communities we work with. There’s a role for everyone who’s passionate about making a difference.

You can be yourself within policing.

PC Amy Tapping of Northumbria Police is the the LGBT co-chair for the National Police Network. Hear her talk about her experiences as an officer from the LGBT community and the support on offer to help police officers and staff be their true selves at work.

View the full video transcript

I'm PC Amy Tapping, I'm the LGBT co-chair for the National Police Network and I work here in the Force Coordination Centre in Northumbria Police.

My role here within the Force Coordination Centre is as a planner. So I help get the right resources in the right place at the right time. So for big protests or events such as pride, we make sure that we've got  enough resources and that we work with all the other  partner agencies for it to be a safe event.

So my inspiration for joining the police was I've always had quite a strong sense of justice and I want to be that person there that can help. What I love about policing is that you can make it whatever you want it to be. There's so many different roles and so many different things that you can do within policing, that there's always something for everybody.

When I was at school Section 28 was in place, and that meant that the staff in the school couldn't support any of the LGBT students. It was really a subject that was ignored. So joining the police I thought that I should really not be open about who I was. Very soon after joining my first shift I realised that I didn't need to worry about that. I was quite confident that this is what I wanted to do. People were really inclusive and asked me about my relationship and how things were and it was just a normal part of life.

I was really lucky that I met my partner through work. We're both police officers and the fantastic thing about working in such an inclusive environment is that we can be confident our relationship is open and we don't have to hide anything.

So over the years before the LGBT network was set up, I did feel there was something missing. I didn't feel that I was being negatively impacted by not having a support association, but it certainly gave me much more confidence within policing and gave me somewhere to go to know there was people like me and to have role models.

The force level associations are there to support our colleagues and to support our potential colleagues. We're there to show that being LGBT+ isn't a barrier to policing. We also look at ensuring that we provide a better service to the public and we support victims of crime, whether it's hate crime or whether it's domestic abuse within the same sex relationships or cyber enabled crime as well.

And we need to ensure that we can support those victims of crime to have the confidence
to come to the police to report. It's important for me that people understand that policing is an inclusive environment. Some of the preconceptions for those within the LGBT community around policing and becoming a police officer is that you can't be gay and in the police. Well clearly that's not true. The police is made up of a wide variety of people and we're there to represent our communities. You can be yourself within policing.
 

Keep in touch

To find out more and keep up to date with our latest news and events, you can visit our website.

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