For this months Behind the Badge, Harrow Online had the pleasure of speaking with PC Tracey Grainger, a Street Duties Instructor from Colindale.
What is your current role?
I am currently a street duties instructor, working from Colindale NW/E. We mentor new students in cohorts of between 7 to 14 students. The students are with us for 7 to 8 weeks to complete their training.
I joined The Met in 2009 as a PCSO, attached to RTPC Barnet. I became a PC in 2015, attached to Barnet Borough now NW/E.
What made you decide to become a police officer?
I had always wanted to become a police officer, and after many life experiences this has become a reality. I like understanding people and intrigued by how they work. I enjoy coming to work and being part of my team.
I love the variety this job offers and there is always something going on. The learning is every day in this job and I am sometimes still surprised by people’s attitudes in diffferent situations.
I like to invest my time in other areas of the job and try to become involved lots of different people facing/supporting roles. I am currently trying to re activate the LGBT role within NW/E, and actively making new contacts.
What are the difficult things in your job that the public may not realise?
Sometimes we have to take control of a situation to avoid risk to both the detainee and other members of public, making choices that are not seen in the public interest but are deemed within the law.
We work long shift hours that can sometimes impact on family life and generally life outside the job.
What are the most rewarding aspects of your job?
Working with like-minded, other great officers, being a team and working through incidents together. Teaching new student officers to have that respect and understanding of the job can be rewarding.
I also enjoy being able to go to a domestic or mental health call and help/support people in the early stages of their career.
I like being part of an organisation that allows us to have so many different, challenging experiences, but allows us to see life from a different perspective.
It is a career I wish I could have had longer in.
What advice would you give to people thinking of joining the Met?
Be prepared to see a lot of life that you couldn’t begin to imagine. You will be working with lots of officers from varied backgrounds, personalities and life experiences.
It’s a very big organisation, but if you want to be part of something, wear the uniform with pride, look forward to coming to work, then this role is for you.
I would say be proud to be part of the largest police force, invest in yourself and the job will be rewarding.
One more thing about me…
I am almost at the end of my career, I am hoping to serve another five years, I enjoy the role, being a police officer is something that is part of me, I love being part of my team at NW/E. In this job it is important to make friends, offer to help others and you will see the rewards. Be varied in your approach.