Coronavirus means new chief constable will have to ‘hit the ground running’

The new chief constable of Sussex will have to “hit the ground running” to deal with social tensions brought about by the coronavirus crisis.

Giles York and Katy Bourne

That was the message from Katy Bourne, the Sussex police and crime commissioner, who has put out a national call for a successor to Giles York, who steps down in the summer.

Mrs Bourne said: “The new chief constable will be arriving just after the anticipated peak of the coronavirus infection which may undoubtedly bring social tensions and a rise in some crime types.

“So she or he will have to hit the ground running and get a grip straight away.”

Mr York has led the force for six years during a time of change and stretched resources, having previously served as deputy chief constable.

Mrs Bourne said: “Now we find ourselves in a global fight against covid-19, police forces like Sussex are part of the front line.

“So I am looking for a chief constable who can continue to lead Sussex Police through unprecedented times.”

As well as winning public confidence and galvanising staff and officers during the current crisis, the new chief constable will also be expected to make the county “a hostile environment for criminals”.

Mrs Bourne said: “Sussex Police, like every public service, will have to balance business as usual with the somewhat unknown requirements of the coming months.

“However, we are better placed to respond with the recruitment of more police officers and PCSOs, and there will be more to come, bringing in new talent to work alongside our experienced officers and staff.

“Simply, I am looking for a high-energy and charismatic chief constable committed to bearing down on crime and keeping Sussex a safe place to live, work and visit.”

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