Deputy Chief Constable Pippa Mills
Tell us a bit about yourself
I’ve been the Deputy Chief Constable of Essex Police for nearly 18 months, having transferred to the force as an Assistant Chief Constable three years ago. I oversee the performance of the force to make sure we’re delivering quality policing services, the programme of strategic change whether estates or IT, and I’m also the discipline authority for the force. I’ve got two teenage sons and outside work enjoy cycling and travelling. I’ve got three dogs, one of whom I recently rescued from Romania
What do you enjoy most about your role?
This is the same answer I would have given even when I first joined the police all that time ago - without doubt it’s the people I get to work with every day and the endless variety. No two days are ever the same.
Why is diversity and inclusion so important in and outside of the workplace?
Diversity and inclusion are absolutely essential as, not only is it important we reflect the communities we serve, but also that we consider the views and perspective of everyone within the organisation. If we all have the same background and life experience, the risk is we all have the same opinions and agree with each other all the time. Its critical that Essex Police is an inclusive organisation, because everyone is different and should feel equally as welcome and valued whatever their background.
How do you think Essex Police values difference?
I think Essex Police values difference in the way we champion and celebrate our peoples different backgrounds and roles – everyone has different skills and, with the variety of roles available in policing, its an incredible place to contribute to the safety of the county.
Tell us something interesting about your role?
As Deputy Chief Constable, I’m responsible for maintaining standards in the force. When someone applies to join us as an officer, they have to send photos of any tattoos with their application. If these are considered unsuitable and they appeal the initial decision, I’m the appeal authority. As such, I get to see lots of photos of tattoos from aspiring officers! I try to make balanced decisions, the test being ‘What would a vulnerable victim of crime feel if an officer had this tattoo’. Most visible skulls and knives are rejected, although I consider each one on their merits.
What advice would you give to anyone thinking about joining Essex Police?
Come along and talk to us. Having joined Essex Police three-and-a-half years ago I can testify that we’re a friendly and welcoming bunch. The ability to communicate with people is the greatest asset any police officer could have, undoubtably more important than physical strength.