Essex Police welcomed almost 80 new recruits during a ceremony with the Home Secretary and police and crime commissioner in attendance.

The 42 men and 37 women took their pledges at the Essex Police headquarters in Chelmsford on March 8 in front of Chief Constable Ben-Julian Harrington, Essex police and crime commissioner Roger Hirst, and Home Secretary and Braintree MP James Cleverly. 

Essex High Sheriff Charles Bishop and his consort Nellie Bishop, and Deputy Lord Lieutenant Sidra Naeem also welcomed the new recruits. 

During his speech, Mr Harrington said tackling all forms of violence is the force’s priority. 

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He said: “It is not an easy task, but you will go forward with my support, the support of your colleagues, and the support of the people of Essex. 

“Our focus on reducing violent crime has seen offending drop by more than 10 per cent - that’s seven and a half thousand fewer incidents.  

“Tackling violence against women and girls continues to be a priority.” 

During his speech, he also highlighted the importance of maintaining public trust and confidence. 

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“Victims of crime need our care and compassion," he said.

"Those who commit crime must be relentlessly pursued. Everyone should be treated respectfully. 

“The people of Essex have high expectations of our officers and rightly so, but their expectations should be no higher than the standards you demand of yourselves. 

“Trust is difficult to gain and easily lost, and the actions of police officers are under intense scrutiny.”