Meet The Beat – PCSO Sam Skinner, Aldridge Police Station, Walsall LPU
PCSOs – what do they stand for? Where do they stand and indeed, what do they do whilst they’re standing wherever it is that they stand?
I’ve had a few requests recently for a blog about the role played by PCSOs, probably prompted by the news reports that some forces are looking at using Police Community Support Officers as the first point of contact between public and police.
I thought long and hard about the best way to present this blog and then, after an embarrassingly long pause, realised that the most obvious way to get a better understanding of what a PCSO does would be to sit down (or stand up) and interview one.
This thought was followed shortly after by the realisation that even better than scratching down their answers in my own ‘spider like’ handwriting, why not deploy a little technology and use video to upload the interview straight onto the tubes of the internet?
Step in my good friend PCSO Sam Skinner of Walsall’s Aldridge Neighbourhood Team who took no convincing at all before she agreed to lend some of her time to answer a few questions about her role.
When I wrote ‘deploy a little technology’ a couple of paragraphs ago, I was being quite literal as the interview was filmed on a mobile phone – the content is good, the picture quality not too bad although there is probably a little room for improvement with the sound – it’s all a bit experimental mind but still, I think it’s turned out rather well.
If you’re interested to learn more about PCSOs there are several on Twitter and you can find a full list of them here.
Sam of course has her own account, as does PCSO Cassie Taylor, Sam’s colleague, which you can find here. They’re both happy to answer further questions and are well worth a follow so if you’re on Twitter yourself, please check them out.
During the interview Sam mentions her powers and refers to her ‘designation card’ – you can examine the designation card currently carried by West Midlands Police PCSOs here, and if you’re interested to know more about their allocated powers you can find out about their role over on our website.