September / October bulletin 2022

Welcome to the Oscar Kilo, National Police Wellbeing Service bulletin covering September and October 2022. 

Read on to find out what we have been up to and what to expect from us in the coming weeks.

What we’ve been up to


Occupational health practitioner network

We have recently launched our brand-new police occupational health network.

The police occupational health practitioner network is committed to improve the provision of occupational health in policing and improve the health of those who work in the police, with the wider business benefits of an enhanced service to the public.

The network aims to engage with all 43 forces of England and Wales, as well as our strategic partners, Occupational Health Nurse Advisors to the Police Service (OHNAPS) and the Association of Local Authority Medical Advisors (ALAMA), to communicate, inform, and influence occupational health teams and services across policing.

Every force will have membership, and this initial meeting was attended by occupational health practitioners from across the country, they discussed how and why the network had been formed, details about the vision and strategy and how the network will work going forward. It was also a fantastic opportunity for individuals to connect with fellow members.

More about occupational health service


Police service employee suicide postvention toolkit launched

We have launched a new toolkit that we have developed with Samaritans to help senior leadership in police forces support staff after the loss of a colleague to suicide.

Following on from the agreement of a suicide prevention consensus statement earlier this year, the toolkit is the first step in the guidance being made available to forces to help manage impact and provide support around this complex and sensitive subject.

The toolkit may also be adapted to support staff who lose a family member or close friend outside the force to suicide and is available for people to access on our website.

Suicide postvention toolkit


Sleep for better mental health

To coincide with world mental health day, we held a brand new Better Sleep webinar, hosted by Dr Sophie Bostock.

In this webinar we'll explored how and why sleep is so tightly linked to wellbeing. An estimated two thirds of those suffering from anxiety and depression also experience poor sleep. Insomnia used to be seen as simply a symptom of poor mental health, but we now know that sleep can drive both positive and negative changes in health. We discussed:

  • Can you have too much sleep? Are you getting the right amount?
  • Which mental health disorders have been linked to poor sleep, and why?
  • What strategies can you use to improve both sleep, and mental health?

Access the webinar


Police covenant mental health peer support symposium

Representatives from Oscar Kilo, the Home Office and peer support experts from across policing, came together for a two-day event in October to discuss the benefits of peer support for mental health and how it supports the police covenant. 

Here's some of the feedback from the delegates who attended:

  • Invaluable - having the opportunity to speak to new colleagues in person
  • Inspiring and excellent
  • Brilliant - thank you so much for putting this together
  • Fantastic opportunities to share ideas
  • Great - well organised
  • Brilliant  - the way the event is organised creates so many opportunities

Read about the event


Cancer, work and you: Returning to work

On 13 October we held our second webinar on cancer, work and you. This event, lead by Chief Inspector Catherine Pritchard, looked at individual experiences, what to expect from work, how to support colleagues and what support is expected of line mangers. We have uploaded the recording to the bottom of the event page.

Watch the recording  


Training update

During September and October we have run the following courses:

September 2022

  • Three Demobilising and Defusing: 28 attendees from five forces
  • Two Supervisor Wellbeing: 15 attendees from three forces
  • Two Chief Officer CPOSA Peer Support: 12 attendees from 12 forces
  • One Police Superintendents Association (PSA) Peer Support:five attendees from two forces
  • One Peer Support - 12 attendees from one force

In total in September 2022 71 police officers and police staff attended training from 23 forces.


October 2022

  • Two Demobilising and Defusing: 15 attendees from four forces
  • Three Supervisor Wellbeing:37 attendees from three forces
  • One Chief Officer CPOSA Peer Support: 13 attendees from 13 forces
  • One OK9 Peer Support: 15 attendees from six forces
  • One Peer Support: 30 attendees from three forces

In total in October 2022 110 police officers and police staff attended training from 29 forces.

For more on available training courses visit our events and training section.

Events and training


Wellbeing vans update

September and October has seen all 10 vans being fully booked out across the country with numerous deployments from Sussex and Surrey for 'Wellbeing and You' event to supporting officers at the remote scene of Saddleworth Moors in classic moors weather.

We also diverted four of our vans to be used at Thames Valley for Operation Bridge and we very much appreciate the understanding from forces whose bookings had to be cancelled or rescheduled due to this large scale operation.

The vans are being utilised for a number of uses from flu vaccination clinics in Northumbria and Merseyside to Menopause awareness in West Midlands.

If you are interested in booking a van or just wish to talk about how we would be able to support you with one of our vans then please make contact by emailing us here or visit the van booking page

Book a van


OK9 update

During September our OK9 dogs made visits which saw them interacting with almost 3,200 officers and staff. 

20 per cent of these deployment were for mutual aid to another force and eight percent were carried out alongside one of our wellbeing vans.

Here are a few of the comments from their visits:

Wellbeing dog Rex visited two departments at HQ who daily have to review sensitive material and needed a cuddle from a big soppy dog. Rex performed faultlessly in his task and left everyone smiling.

Woody was invited to a CPD for a local policing team in order to improve welfare within the team. The Inspector left this as a surprise for the team who were very happy to see Woody. There were lots of questions about OK9 and very positive feedback. We were joined by OK9 dogs Dax and Holly and their handler at lunchtime and the officers and staff had great fun playing with the dogs.

After being the victim of a serious assault a PC was returning to see his team for the first time since he had been rushed to hospital. Baloo was requested by his Inspector to be there to provide a welcome distraction throughout and unbelievably made a beeline for the PC and stayed by him throughout the visit. Whilst totally engaged with stroking her he began to talk about the incident to his colleagues and they all spoke about how they felt. It was incredibly moving and exactly what OK9 is all about.



What’s coming up in next month

Better sleep webinar: The power of light: The best kept secret to sleep and health

During the winter months our exposure to daylight can be limited and this can have a detrimental impact on our sleep. This brand new webinar hosted by Sleep Scientist Dr Sophie Bostock - The power of light: The best kept secret to sleep and health, will investigate how we can improve our light exposure to help improve our sleep.

Register here


Investigator week of action

Once again we will be supporting the National Police Chiefs' Council in their investigator wellbeing week of action which runs from 7-11 November. This will include the publication of the updated wellbeing of investigators toolkit which is hosted on our website, the toolkit provides investigators, their line managers and senior leaders with a raft of proven interventions, outlining how best to implement each idea and all the resources needed to help embed them in your force. 

Each day throughout the week there will be free online sessions you can join. Find out more, book your sessions and access the toolkit using the link below. 

Register and access the toolkit


Operation Hampshire 

In November we will be launching a brand new national campaign to encourage officers and staff to report incidents of assault. This campaign will include a video and a wide range of resources including graphics and copy to be used locally by forces. We have also developed an online training package to raise awareness of Op Hampshire which will be included.

Full details will be sent to forces early November. 


Emergency services mental health symposium

Registration is now open for the Emergency Services Mental Health Symposium on the 23rd and 24th of November at Silverstone Race Circuit.

As a follow up to the Symposium held in London last November by The Royal Foundation, this ‘one year on’ event is being hosted by an amazing collaboration of emergency service and first responder organisations, together with the charities that support them.

This year’s event will be a unique opportunity to hear from practitioners, senior leaders, frontline staff and subject matter experts from a wide range of 999 services and organisations from all around the UK.

It will bring people together to learn from each other, showcase the progress that has been made since the inaugural event last year, and maximise the impact we can have on improving wellbeing within our own organisations.  

Find out more 


Can your force help with our study?

We are looking for a couple of forces to help us with the development and evaluation of a diet and exercise intervention for promoting better sleep, health, and wellbeing.

The study is being carried out by colleagues from Washington State University and will require participants to follow a diet and exercise programme for around four weeks.

If your force is interested in getting involved and can commit to having at least 25-40 participants please get in touch by email.

Full details are available here