Edinburgh police officer wins international policing award

Tracey will fly out to Cairns in September. Picture: Jon Savage
Tracey will fly out to Cairns in September. Picture: Jon Savage
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AN award-winning Capital cop is to make it a hat-trick of gongs when she scoops a top global prize later in the year.

Trail-blazing PC Tracey Gunn will be crowned Officer of the Year by the International Association of Women Police in Australia this September.

I don’t do it for me, I do it for the prisoners, their families and their friends

PC TRACEY GUNN

The Evening News reported back in January how Tracey won Police Scotland’s top honour in the Force’s Excellence Awards for her pioneering prison liaison work.

And on Tuesday she picked-up the British Association for Women in Policing Police Officer of the Year title.

“This is the most amazing and rewarding work I have ever done – but I don’t do it for me, I do it for the prisoners, their families and their friends,” said Tracey, 46. “In fact, most of what I do is promoting what the inmates themselves have done; it’s their work, their ideas, their initiative.

Tracey has been the driving force behind the creation of the Police Liaison Officer position at HMP Edinburgh.

The first role of its kind in Scotland, initiatives and ways of working she introduced have been rolled out at other prisons across the country.

“I feel very humbled to have even been put forward for these awards,” she said.

“I’m delighted that it gives the Prison Liaison Officer role such a platform to showcase these really inspiring projects.”

Tracey’s flagship scheme, Meet the Police, sees events held both in prisons and local communities at courts, supermarkets, libraries and schools.

The open days aim to break down barriers between children and young people, their families and the police.

2,000 copies of a booklet developed by Tracey and six prisoners – helping inmates’ children understand what happens when their father goes to jail – have been printed.

While a short film made with prisoners is also being finalised that aims to steer young people who are involved in low level offending or those at risk of offending away from more serious crime.

“I am very grateful for all the support I have received to get this role off the ground and help me to in turn support those who really need it,” said Tracey.

Deputy Chief Constable Rose Fitzpatrick praised Tracey for her “inspirational” work and “exceptional” dedication.

“I’m delighted that her commitment to building bridges between prisoners, their families and the police has been recognised, not only in Scotland but also now across the UK and internationally,” added DCC Fitzpatrick.

“She absolutely deserves this world-wide recognition for the positive difference she is making to so many 
lives.”

andy.shipley@edinburghnews.com