Chief says hiring black officers needs ‘balancing’

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RECRUITMENT of ethnic minorities has to be balanced with limited new jobs in the police force, the county’s top officer has said.

It comes as Home Secretary Theresa May criticised police forces for poor recruitment of black officers.

Hampshire chief constable Andy Marsh said his force actively recruited staff investigators last year from under-represented minority groups in an internship scheme.

And the force is funding 14 people from diverse communities to obtain the certificate needed to become a police officer.

Mr Marsh said: ‘Ensuring our workforce is representative of the communities we serve is extremely important to us, and we’ve made a commitment to ethnic minorities to represent them equally with those from other sections of society.

‘This has to be balanced against limited funding and the limited opportunities to recruit across the force.’