Women across Leicestershire Police raise their hands to support International Women’s Day 2021
Main article content
Today (Monday 8 March), marked International Women’s Day (IWD), a global day celebrating women’s achievements and raising awareness about equality for women.
This year’s theme was #ChooseToChallenge, which encouraged women to raise their hand to show their support and that they are committed to challenge and call out inequality.
In place of usual celebrations, this year’s International Women’s Day was celebrated virtually across the force due to the pandemic. Leicestershire Police and the force’s Women’s Inclusive Network (WIN) showed its support by sharing a series of powerful images of females that work within a variety of roles in policing.
Some of the profile pieces shared across the day included a detective constable working in the force’s rape investigation team. In her piece she shared the support she had received following her return from maternity leave, enabling her to express breastmilk for her baby in a private environment, as well as achieving flexible working patterns to suit her and her family.
Other profiles shared across the day were from a Muslim student officer who has used her faith and background to inspire others in joining the police, as well as breaking down stereotypes in and amongst the community.
Chair of Leicestershire Police’s Women’s Inclusive Network (WIN), Detective Chief Inspector Reme Gibson, said: “It is really important that we celebrate the role of women in policing and indeed across so many other professions.
“Our organisation has changed so much over the past 15 years and we are now seeing more and more women, both staff and officers, in senior positions and specialist roles; it is because of those positive changes that this has occurred.
“It is great that we have the opportunity to be part of this global event and recognise some of the brilliant women that work for Leicestershire Police.”
Chief Constable for Leicestershire Police, Simon Cole also showed his support for the day, he said: “When I joined the police in the late 1980s, women made up about 10% of officers, and the majority of staff roles.
“Now Leicestershire Police is almost 50/50 in its gender balance across our officers and staff as a whole. My daily duties see me working within a Chief Officer team with talented women running various departments.
“I see specialist detectives, firearms officers, forensic examiners and public order teams where women have very much decided to #ChooseChallenge.
“When I meet our new officer recruits and new staff too, I meet more women than men. I always tell them that there are three tests for what we do every day; can you look yourself in the mirror afterwards? How will it look on the front page of the local paper, or on social media? Would you tell your mum?
“On International Women’s Day I see women playing a key role in the Force and outside of it too – that can only be a good thing for policing.”