PC Adele Owen from Greater Manchester Police has been awarded the Queen’s Police Medal in this year’s New Year’s Honours list.
A serving officer for almost 20 years, Adele is the current Tactical Mental Health Lead for the Force, transforming the way police officers in Greater Manchester respond to people suffering from mental ill health and also trailblazing the Force’s response to colleagues who need support themselves.
Adele has been instrumental in developing processes that help officers work with partners to access professional advice when responding to someone needing mental health support. This helps services give the most appropriate care possible. She is involved in the devolution of Health & Social Care in Greater Manchester, working to improve mental health care pathways across the city region, and is also a member of a National Expert Reference Group, working with the Royal College of Psychiatrists to set standards for achieving better access to crisis care.
As well as this, Adele is also being honoured for her work in recognising officers and staff who struggle with their own mental ill health due to the demands of the role – she developed policing’s first Mental Health Peer Support Network two years ago, persuading colleagues to act as peer supporters and arranging for third sector organisations to provide mentors with coaching skills. This eventually led to the development of GMP’s Wellbeing Strategy.
Adele said: “I’m absolutely delighted to receive this honour. It’s a huge surprise and I’m very grateful to those who nominated me. I feel very proud to represent GMP in my current role and have been privileged to work with many dedicated colleagues during my 20 years with the Force.”
Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said: “Adele’s leadership in a challenging but important area of our work is exemplary, and her use of evidence based practice to develop the ways that we support members of the community and our colleagues helps us now and in the future.
“We’re really pleased that Adele has been recognised in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours, and on behalf of GMP I would like to extend my congratulations to her on this wonderful achievement.”
Minister for Policing and the Fire Service Nick Hurd said: “Police Constable Adele Owen has been fundamental in driving improvement in mental health care and provision, both within Greater Manchester Police and in the wider community. Her attitude and determination have galvanised change and it is only right she is recognised for her leadership in this area. It is also heartening to see that more than half of the Queen’s Police Medals continue to be awarded to rank and file police officers.”
The Queen’s Police Medal is awarded to police officers in the United Kingdom and Commonwealth of Nations, for gallantry or distinguished service and was instituted by its royal warrant in 1954. It is awarded to officers of any rank for acts of courage and conspicuous devotion to duty and superseded the King’s Police Medal, which was originally created in 1909.