The island’s police force is ramping up its recruitment drive with the vacancy rate currently at 6%.

The percentage is broken down in to 15 vacancies, with 231 police officers making up a full contingent.

It have to recruit above this 6% figure to build resilience as there is a number of planned retirements in the coming year.

A student recruitment drive is planned for February and March 2024, with aims of in-take in to the force for September.

There is also a planned push at attracting officers from other jurisdictions, with a ‘transfer reroute’ scheme set to remain open rather than only open in stages as it is currently.

The police are going to collect feedback from applicants and recruiters in hopes of improving the access in to the police.

Last month every police officer in the island received an extra £3,000 in their pay packets, with the one-off payment designed to ‘respond to recruitment and retention issues while long-term pay solutions are explored.’

The retention payment was awarded to all federated ranks of the force during this financial year, with a condition to remain in the constabulary for a period of 12 months.

It was announced following the former Chief Constable, Gary Roberts, suggested that some officers were relying on the foodbank.

The government says that police officers in their first years of service receive ‘relatively low pay’ and this is causing issues with retention, particularly for those officers with fewer than five years of service.

Constables begin on £24,780 and further increments usually follow on an annual basis.

Top of the pay scale for constables is currently £41,130 (as at September 1, 2020).

Annual leave allowance starts at 22 days rising to 30 days after 20 years’ service.

Police pay in the Isle of Man is linked to UK pay due to a reciprocal agreement.