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Public complaints against police officers and staff

Who can I complain about?

Complaints can be made against the following members of staff:

  • Police officers of all ranks, including members of the Special Constabulary.
  • Staff employed by the Police Authority and under the direction and control of the Chief Constable. This includes police community support officers, Scenes of Crime Officers and detention staff.
  • Contracted staff e.g. Escort or custody officers employed by another company.
  • This does not include members of the Police Authority, Neighbourhood Watch and Police Surgeons.

What can I complain about?

If you think that a police officer or member of police staff has behaved incorrectly or unfairly, you have the right to make a complaint.

People who work in the police service should behave appropriately at all times. Expectations about the behaviour of both police officers and members of police staff are set out in their respective Standards of Professional Behaviour. These expectations include requirements to:

  • Act with honesty and integrity, fairness and impartiality
  • Treat members of the public and their colleagues with respect
  • Not abuse their powers and authority
  • Act in a manner that does not discredit or undermine public confidence in the police service

If you feel that someone working for the police has not met these standards, you can make a complaint. These types of complaints are dealt with under the Police Reform Act 2002.

Other types of complaint

Complaints about the overall policies or procedures of a police force are often referred to as ‘direction and control issues’. These can include complaints about the organisation of a police force or general policing standards in your local area. These complaints cannot be dealt with under the Police Reform Act 2002.

How can I make a complaint about the conduct of a person serving with the police?

There are several ways to make a complaint to Cambridgeshire Constabulary

In person

You can complain in person at your local station or any other station within Cambridgeshire Constabulary. A supervisor will speak to you about your complaint and will explain your options. If a supervisor is not immediately available one will make contact with you in due course.

All police stations in the Constabulary have access for wheelchairs and all have hearing loop systems. Information on the complaint process can also be provided in other formats.

By post

Write to the following address:

Professional Standards Department
Cambridgeshire Constabulary
Biggleswade Police Station
SG18 8AL

By email

You can email us at: PSD@cambs.pnn.police.uk

By telephone

01234 842538

Contact online

If you would like to contact Cambridgeshire Constabulary regarding a complaint, you can do so by filling in the online form below.

Please note: you should NOT use this form to report a crime. In an emergency dial 999. For other non-urgent matters contact us on 101.

When will I get a reply?


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