Any attack on a police officer is completely unacceptable. Assaults specifically against emergency workers, including the police, are punishable by up to 12 months in prison and could be charged as common assault. The Government’s recent consultation seeking views on doubling the maximum sentence for assaults on emergency workers shows our commitment to ensuring these attacks are not tolerated. We continue to work with the Ministry of Justice to ensure that assaults on police officers are handled with appropriate severity by the whole criminal justice system.
We have also accelerated our work to introduce a Police Covenant, recognising the service and sacrifice of those who work, or have worked, in policing and to deliver the practical support they need. The key areas of focus will be physical protection, health and wellbeing and support for families. We expect to publish our response to the recent public consultation shortly.
The Government is clear that police officers should have the best possible protection when facing the physical violence that is sometimes directed against them. Decisions on the purchase and supply of protective equipment, including Body Armour, are primarily for Chief Officers.
We also welcome the publication of the National Police Chiefs’ Council’s Officer and Staff Safety Review. We will continue to work closely with policing partners to consider the recommendations in the report.