Pretty soon a small merry band of PCSOs had got together on the National-PCSOs forums and in that launch year 2004, we saw a great spike of participation, discussion and involvement. We were promised 24,000 PCSOs, way above the amount of Special Constables and this prompted many questions and precious few answers.
Of course the 24,000 PCSOs never arrived, this was all pie in the sky. But 16,000 PCSOs (the same number as there were Special Constables) was a significant achievement and for the next few years, National-PCSOs saw some pretty hectic and at times, sensational exchange of views!
What is the future of National-PCSOs now ?
In 2013 the domain name PCSO.com went up for sale click here for more info on that, at the same time as a hefty dip in membership and participation on the site.
Undoubtedly we have "lost people" to the more modern social media, such as Facebook and Twitter but National-PCSOs remains in place, we still offer a specific unoffical "home" to PCSOs across the UK!
Please spread the word, we need new PCSOs, veteran PCSOs, PCSOs who have moved on to PC, PCs who have moved back to PCSOs. We need EVERYBODY to pitch in with their views, opinions and comments!
Could you participate in our forum discussions? You would be more than welcome
What is the future of PCSOs now ?
To understand this, think back to 2002 and why the then Home Secretary, David Blunkett introduced PCSOs in the first place. He wanted a significant Police presence on our streets but didn't like the high cost of Police Constables.
PCSOs originally came in with just 3 weeks training and this was deliberate to save money. Saving money was a massive reason for bringing in PCSOs and do we still have the need to save money today?
Yes we do, as long as our Government has eye watering debts to pay off, then all sections of Government Operations will continue to "have to save money" and hence the continued need for PCSOs.
PCSOs today play a major part in Neighbourhood Policing and depending on which Police Force you look at, PCSOs have taken over many roles that previously were the proud domain of Police Constables. It would be expensive to reverse some of those PCSO roles for sure.
What does it all mean ?
Well that's what we want to know as well, could you join us and add your experience, your opinion and your guidance to the forums? We have an impressive back catalogue of old threads and old discussions dating back years. These are interesting and valuable, but more important are today's issues. What can you tell us about PCSOs today? CAN YOU JOIN US? Come aboard!