Lincolnshire Police have launched an appeal for more volunteer PCSOs as part of a campaign to provide an effective service in every community in the county.
Funding cuts have led to complaints that there is a lack of a police presence - particularly in rural communities.
Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Hardwick initially targeted 1,000 volunteers and said he would relish a return to the days when every village effectively had a ‘bobby-on-the-beat’.
Police say volunteers have come forward in certain areas - particularly Lincoln.
However, the force says it is ‘actively looking’ for new recruits in most other parts of the county.
The force denied volunteer PCSO’s are effectively ‘policing on the cheap’.
CJ Blakey, assistant volunteer coordinator at Lincolnshire Police, said: “Volunteering is a great way to put something back into your community.
“Our PCSO’s do a fantastic job and as a volunteer you really can help make a difference. and at the same time experience situations you might not do so otherwise.”
Potential duties include:
○ Providing a visible uniformed presence on patrol in local communities;
○ Giving advice to victims of crime - and be a point of contact for local people;
○ Supporting police operations by providing reassurances to the public;
○ Working alongside frontline officers, PCSOs and staff from other organisations to address local issues;
○ Helping the local policing team on minor incidents, enquiries and anti-social behaviour.
Ms Blakey added: “The scheme is open to everyone and the only stipulation is you have to be over 18.
“It helps if you have knowledge of the community you live in but that is not always possible. We’re happy to sit down talk to anyone who is interested.”
Like paid PCSO’s, volunteers do not have powers of arrest.
○ Anyone interested can get more details from http://lincs.police.uk/Join Us/Volunteers/Volunteer-PCSO or call the Volunteer Challenge Team on 101 ext 47063.