Am I eligible to be a police constable?

South Wales Police encourage people from all backgrounds to join the organisation.

Working as police officer is a tough but very rewarding career. Complete this self screening exercise to see if you have what it takes.

Below are some guidelines for new applicants:

Age
You must be at least 18 years old to become a police officer. There is no upper age limit, but bear in mind that the compulsory retirement age for police constables and sergeants is 60.

Probation
All newly-recruited police officers must undertake a two-year probationary period.

Nationality
You must be a British Citizen, citizen from the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, Commonwealth citizen or foreign national with no restrictions on your stay in the United Kingdom. In accordance with Home Office guidance and the Association of Chief Police Officers’ National Vetting Policy, candidates are reminded that they must have been continually resident in the UK for the three year period immediately before an application is made. This is to satisfy the requirement to vet all applicants in an equitable manner and the UK Police service does not currently have any means of facilitating vetting checks overseas, to the extent required of those who have been resident in the UK. Applicants who cannot be vetted, cannot be appointed.

Qualifications Required
The new Certificate in Knowledge of Policing (CKP) is mandatory for anyone applying to become a police constable. On application, you will then be required to pass an assessment centre which includes written tests and ability tests.

Physical Fitness
You must be physically fit in order to effectively complete the duties required of a police officer. All applicants must pass a basic fitness test before appointment.

Health
Applicants must be in good health mentally and physically to deal with the pressures and demands of police work.
Successful applicants who receive a conditional offer of employment or who are placed into a pool of successful candidates to whom we intend to make a conditional offer when a position arises will then be asked prior to appointment to fill in a medical questionnaire and undertake a medical examination which will also include an eyesight test. Failure to meet the medical and eyesight standards will mean you cannot be appointed. If you have a disability, we will make adjustments where it is reasonable to do so.

Height Restrictions
There are no minimum or maximum height requirements.

Tattoos
Candidates with visible tattoos may be eligible for appointment. Each case will be considered on its own merits, taking into account the number, nature, size, prominence, appearance and location of the tattoos. Tattoos must not be offensive to colleagues or members of the public or undermine the dignity of your role within the Force. Tattoos visible on the face, head or neck above the collar line will not be permitted regardless of their nature or size. Please refer to College of Policing for further guidance: http://www.college.police.uk/en/19950.htm

Financial Status
All applicants will have their financial status checked. These checks are carried out because police officers have access to privileged information, which may make them vulnerable to corruption. Any applicants with outstanding County Court Judgements, who have been registered bankrupt with outstanding debts, will be rejected. If you have discharged bankruptcy debts then you will need to provide a Certificate of Satisfaction with your application. Applicants who are the subject of a current Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) will not be considered.

Criminal Record
You may still be eligible to join the police service if you have minor convictions/cautions, but there are certain offences and conditions that will make you ineligible. This includes anyone who has received a formal caution in the last five years, committed a violent crime or public order offence. Please refer to the  npia-02-20112835.pdf (2061 downloads) for guidance.

Previous applications
You may only apply to one force at a time and your application will not be accepted if you have previously applied unsuccessfully, in the last six months from the date of your initial letter of rejection, to any police force in England and Wales that requires candidates to undertake the Police SEARCH ® Recruitment Assessment Centre.

Membership of the BNP or a similar organisation
South Wales Police has a policy of prohibiting any of our officers or staff from becoming members of the BNP, or a similar organisation whose aims, objectives or pronouncements may contradict the duty to promote race equality. If you are, or have previously been a member of the BNP or a similar organisation, the application will result in rejection.