Police officers will be punished for being rude in public, clocking on while unfit or after drinking alcohol, according to new guidelines. The Home Secretary has thrown her weight behind the code of ethics and will put them before Parliament.
A code of ethics for police forces across the country will give the public "even greater confidence" in officers, a member of an influential committee has said.
Conservative James Clappison, who sits on the Home Affairs select committee, told the Daily Telegraph:
The over-whelming majority of the police are polite to the public but I think it is useful to set out.
I think this will be good for the police themselves and for the public and give them even greater confidence in them. The overwhelmingly majority of police are decent and conscientious.
If officers breach the code of ethics a range of sanctions are available. Officers may simply be given a verbal warning or moved to another team, but more significant failures will require formal investigation and may result in an individual losing their job.
The guidelines, written by The College of Policing, would punish officers who appeared for work under the influence of alcohol, and those who had sex or took drugs while on duty.
Officers will be urged to blow the whistle on colleagues of all ranks and failure to comply to regulations could lead to disciplinary action and even dismissal.
The College of Policing hope the guidelines will help to restore the public's faith in the police, after a series of corruption, race and behaviour while undercover scandals rocked constabularies across the UK.
The Home Secretary is understood to back the guidelines and they will go before parliament, although no date has yet been finalised.