A small police team who "pack a punch" were among the winners of a Merseyside Police award ceremony.
The force's annual ‘Community First Awards’ were celebrated on Tuesday, November 14, to recognise police officers, staff, volunteers, and community partners for their dedication, bravery and professionalism. The ceremony, which is now in its sixth year, saw members of the force awarded for a range of achievements.
Partner agency professionals, volunteers and community leaders were also recognised for their work alongside the police and their commitment to supporting our communities, preventing crime, protecting people, and pursuing offenders in Merseyside.
Chief Constable Serena Kennedy and Police and Crime Commissioner Emily Spurrell each chose a winner for their own personal choice awards. The Chief Constable, who presented the awards at the Crowne Plaza in Liverpool city centre, described the evening as a showcase of the sterling work carried out by officers and staff across the force.
She said: “I’m really proud of the officers, staff and volunteers who work for Merseyside Police and also our partners and members of our community who are vital to the success of Merseyside Police. This annual awards ceremony gives us the chance to recognise some of the amazing work that has been carried out across the force and to say thank you.
"The people who have won awards tonight have all shown their personal commitment and dedication to keeping communities across Merseyside safe through their exceptional work."
One of the winners was the team between Operation Interface who won the leadership and Me – Team of the Year award. A small team within Prevention, Operation Interface is at the forefront of preventing, educating and protecting the Merseyside community from serious violence and knife crime.
Merseyside Police said the team delivered exceptional performance in some of the highest risk communities for violence by providing vital support for organisational development, learning and reassurance operations following critical incidents, which has had a significant impact in our communities.
Merseyside recorded serious violence reductions in hot spots by 35% during 22/23 and this downward trend is continuing in 23/24 with a further 12% reduction.
After receiving their award the Op Interface team couldn't believe they'd won the award. Superintendent Phil Mullally, said: "It's absolutely fantastic and the team couldn't believe it when it was announced – we were all speechless.
"We are only a small team but we pack a punch and we know we are having an impact on the streets. The reductions we are seeing show that we are having an impact on violent crime and we are making our communities safer. As a team we want to thank all those people in our communities and our partners who have supported the work we have been doing in targeting hotspot areas.
"Our patrols are out engaging with our communities every day and they're really heartened when they are being thanked for the work they are doing to make our neighbourhoods safer and it's so pleasing to see that we are having a real positive impact in our communities."
Other winners on the night included:
•The Chief Constable’s Award: Constable Mark Hobin
•Community Engagement Award: Sergeant Rachel Hassett
•Community First Partnership Award: Chief Constable and Police & Crime Commissioner’s ‘She Inspires’ Football Programme
•Healthy Organisation Award – Innovation & Efficiency – Jamie Molloy and Rachel McEvoy
•Healthy People Award – Diversity and Inclusion: Police Race Action Plan Team
•Healthy People Award – Wellbeing: Sergeant Ste Holmes
•Special Recognition Award: Pauline Fielding MBE
•Specialist Capabilities Award: Eagleye/Automatic Number Plate Recognition
•Leadership & Me – Police Volunteer of the Year Award: Karen Jones