PC Deb Ashley - Willenhall neighbourhood policing team
Last week we promised that we’d share some features on the officers who make up the neighbourhood policing team in #Willenhall to share more about us and the work we do.
Here’s our first one, on PC Deb Ashley.
Deb’s been with the force for over 22 years. She spent her first two years on a response team and has been at Willenhall ever since!
Deb said: “It may seem a long time to be on one team, but I enjoy neighbourhood policing. The team has changed considerably during my time here. The current team are a great bunch and I know they always have my back. We have supported each other professionally and personally over the years."
Deb had a career in hairdressing after leaving school. She them decided to study psychology at university, with a particular focus on mental health. After graduating, she joined us in 1998 knowing she wanted a challenging career, but one where she could help people.
Deb said: “The role of a neighbourhood officer is never predictable and ever-changing. I wouldn’t say I have a typical day, I can go from dealing with a parking issue one minute and be called to an immediate response job the next.
“My main role however, is to manage and resolve both short and long term issues in my area. They can vary from minor neighbour disputes to more serious local issues where long term intervention is needed. I work closely with partners to do this, and I have developed excellent relationships with these people over the years. I see many as close friends now."
Deb described her most memorable moment was when she helped a vulnerable woman. After spending time getting to know her at a local centre she discovered there were some issues at home, Deb worked with her throughout and following a court case she was thrilled to see the relief on the woman’s face when it was all over.
She said the worst part is dealing with death - to attend a sudden death or have to give a death message is never easy and stays with you for a long time.
While the best part of her job is meeting people while on patrol that she’s helped along the way. The sense of pride she feels makes all the tough things worthwhile.
Deb is immensely proud to work in Willenhall with so many great people. There were some really positive comments about her in a recently local survey which some of you took part in. She was even described as the ‘best police officer in the world!’
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If you’d like to get involved and help make your area a safer place for your family and friends why not get involved in StreetWatch or Neighbourhood Watch? Visit our website for details https://www.west-midlands.police.uk/get-involved