First figures published for dismissals recorded on the Police Barred List

Just over 100 police officers, special constables and staff had to be placed on the new Police Barred List in the first months following its introduction, figures from the College of Policing show.

The Barred List came into being from 15 December 2017 following the Policing and Crime Act 2017, which made it a requirement for all Home Office forces in England and Wales to inform the College of Policing of dismissals for conduct or performance matters.

Across forces in England and Wales; 70 police officers from PC to Superintendent rank, three members of the special constabulary, and 31 police staff were dismissed and are now prevented from re-entering the police service or joining other policing bodies.

The figures released today cover the period up to 31 March 2018. The College will now release figures on an annual basis to cover the financial year.

The Barred List also includes dismissals of officers who resigned or retired prior to a misconduct hearing being held. New legislation now enables forces to continue with these investigations and, where appropriate, still hold a hearing to establish whether or not the officer would have been dismissed had they remained in the police service.

Additionally, the names of police officers and members of the special constabulary dismissed for gross misconduct and placed on the Barred List, are published on a publicly searchable database.

Detective Superintendent Jackie Alexander, College of Policing lead for professional standards, said:

“The majority of the people working in policing act with honesty and integrity as shown by the number of dismissals in relation to the overall workforce of over 200,000 people.

“When people working in policing do fall below the required standard, it is important not only that they are dismissed, but also that they are prevented from returning to any policing role or body, for as long as they remain unsuitable. This safeguard is now in place with the new Barred List, which forces and policing bodies are required to check to ensure an applicant has not been Listed before any appointment is made.  

“Any serious wrongdoing by those working in policing will be troubling to the public. The figures demonstrate that forces have measures in place to uncover wrong-doing, investigate effectively when it occurs, and hold officers and staff to account for their behaviour.”

The publicly searchable database can be found here.

Contact Information

College Press Office

College of Policing

020 3837 0435

Notes to editors

  • A copy of the figures being published are available to download.
  • Policing bodies other than police forces who must use the Barred List as part of pre-employment checks are Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabularies and Fire & Rescue Service, offices of Police and Crime Commissioners, and the Independent Office for Police Conduct.
  • In this first reporting period for the Barred List, only five out of 71 officers dismissed were granted an exemption under relevant grounds contained in the legislation from being published on the publicly searchable database. These grounds include national security or safeguarding concerns.
  • The Barred List replaced the disapproved register previously used to capture the names of dismissed officers, and those that resigned or retired while subject to gross misconduct where it was considered that there may have been a case to answer.

There was no legislative requirement to place names on the disapproved register. 

Where appropriate, details of those placed on the old disapproved register are available to forces via the Police National Database (PND), which is checked during routine vetting procedures. The legislation is not retrospective so details cannot be transferred to the new Barred List.

  • Disapproved register figures for the rest of the financial year (FY) 2017/18 leading up to 15 December 2017 are available, along with complete sets for FYs 2016/17 and 2015/16.

These figures only show data for Home Office forces.

FY 2017/18 leading up to 15 December 2017 are available to download from this email. FYs 2016/17 and 2015/16 can be found here.

  • PLEASE NOTE: A direct comparison cannot be made between disapproved register and Barred List data, due to differing recording criteria, as detailed below.

The disapproved register contained officers, specials and staff who had resigned or retired whilst subject to a gross misconduct investigation where it was considered there would be a case to answer if still serving. I.e. without a hearing actually being held to determine whether the case should be found proven or unproven.

The Barred List records officers, specials and staff who resigned or retired that subsequently had gross misconduct allegations found proven against them, and who would have been dismissed were they still in the service. Resigned or retired officers/staff whose cases have not yet been concluded, or where it has not been determined at a hearing that they would have been dismissed if serving, do not go on the Barred List.