She is the new Chief Superintendent of Wolverhampton Police after swapping London for the heart of the Black Country.
Newly-appointed Jayne Meir took up the reins as the city’s head of policing yesterday (25 July) after a 20-year police career that’s seen her progress from beat bobby to counter terrorism and tackling cybercrime.
Her first priority is to get out into local communities to hear local people’s views and understand their concerns. She knows the key to successful integration is to learn the lingo…so she’s already taking a crash course in Yam Yam!
Congratulations on the new role Jayne, what attracted you to West Midlands Police?
“Having worked within the Metropolitan Police area for almost 20 years I was attracted by the opportunity to see policing in another large force.
“West Midlands Police has got a good reputation and I have worked alongside the force before on counter-terrorism matters.
“It always seemed a progressive, forward-thinking force and when this role came up it seemed a fantastic opportunity.
“I wanted to broaden my experience but also to share the experiences I have gathered to provide different views and benefit policing in Wolverhampton.”
Where has your police career taken you?
“I started as a PC in Hackney in 1996 and worked up to Detective Sergeant for community safety across Westminster which involved dealing with issues like domestic abuse and hate crime.
“I then joined the counter terrorism unit as a Detective Inspector.
“From there I headed up a team tackling cybercrime and internet fraud. It’s one of the biggest challenges facing UK policing with new figures showing that one in 10 people have now been victim to online crime. In fact, you’re 20 times more likely to be robbed while at your computer than held up in the street.
But there are some simple steps people can take to help protect themselves against high-tech crooks.
A wide-ranging career; do you believe that will set you in good stead as Wolverhampton Police’s new Commander?
“I would like to think so and it will help me to continue to build on the great work of Chief Supt Simon Hyde…they are big boots to fill following his retirement.
“I have seen how things work over the last week and it is clear there is a really good team here to work alongside.
“I am looking forward to getting to know them and all the neighbourhoods across the city.
“Each area has its own challenges and I want to work with our partners and communities to make Wolverhampton a happy, safe place to be.”
Are you looking forward to learning about the city then?
“Absolutely, this is a very exciting time for me and I can’t wait to get started, I feel a great sense of pride.
“I am sure it will feel different for a while having moved to a new area of the country.
“But I have already started to get a feel for the place. That will only improve the longer I am here.”
What are your immediate priorities in the role?
“The first priority is to get out and about and meet people from the local area. I want to find out what they want from me and my officers in Wolverhampton.
“Ultimately I want to deliver an excellent service for our communities, for families to feel safe and secure while knowing that we are listening to their concerns.”
Are you familiar with yam yam? You may need a crash course in order to fully understand the views of some local residents!
“My neighbour, who is Black Country born and bred, has been trying to teach me the local dialect. They have suggested though that, if in doubt, just give the thumbs up and say “bostin”!
“I think I can bring a new perspective to Wolverhampton, fresh ideas and a fresh approach while building on the success of what is already being done.
“An area of expertise for me is tackling business crime; I will be seeking to develop improved Business Crime Reduction initiatives across the city.
“We want to be on the front foot and look to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour before it happens.
“We will work with partners and look to support the young and vulnerable in our communities, to prevent them from becoming victims and steer them away from involvement in crime.”
You will have been aware of the benefits of working with partners recently as part of Operation Eliminate then?
“Yes and absolutely that is something we will be looking to continue: we can’t tackle issues within neighbourhoods alone.
“We have seen the success of Operation Eliminate which has responded to concerns over drugs in the city.
“As part of the operation, police have worked alongside the City of Wolverhampton Council and Department of Public Health to address these and will carry on working together to ensure the safety and well-being of communities.
“Operation Eliminate is a long-term initiative but there have already been a series of arrests and charges.”
Were you always destined to become a police officer?
“I actually started in retail and did that for a year after leaving university.
“I come from a family of fire fighters so it was obviously in my psyche to want to be involved in a public service – and here I still am at the age of 42!
“It is such a great feeling to be able to play a role in protecting the public and is something I will be striving to continue as Chief Superintendent in Wolverhampton.”
Source:: West Midlands Police News