Rotherham’s new District Commander takes up post

A new police District Commander has started work in Rotherham after being promoted from a senior position in Sheffield.

Monday, 13th May 2019, 2:23 pm
Updated Tuesday, 14th May 2019, 2:06 pm
Rotherham's new District Commander Una Jennings

Chief Superintendent Una Jennings, who was formerly South Yorkshire Police's lead officer for tackling armed criminality, is now in her new role as Rotherham’s District Commander.

In the role she will have the overall responsibility for policing of Rotherham as a whole.

Chief Supt Jennings has been as a police officer for 17 years and before joining South Yorkshire Police two years ago was in the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

Chief Superintendents Una Jennings and Stuart Barton who presented her with a ‘recognition of service’ certificate for her efforts in Sheffield

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Taking up her role today, she has revealed her plans for the district.

She said: “I chose this career for very clear reasons and I am extremely proud to be a police officer. We work hard to change lives; when people call us, they need our help and I am committed to providing the best possible service now and in the future.

“It won’t escape your notice, especially when I speak, that I’m not from Rotherham, or South Yorkshire. I’m an Ulster woman and that means I am from a place that understands legacy

“I am from a place that understands courage, compassion and connection. Understanding and responding to legacy issues is critical, but we must also make sure that policing of the past does not destroy or disempower policing in the present.

“It’s a delicate balance, but a crucial one, which I appreciate better than most. “When I arrived in South Yorkshire I was instantly hooked, it’s a wonderful place. Full of life, full of optimism and the people are second to none, you deserve the best of policing and our force can give you that.”

The mum-of-one said she has been preparing a long time for her new role, and hopes her strengths in both investigation and vulnerability will have a positive impact in Rotherham.

“I understand the balance between operational effectiveness and building confidence in fragile communities, I’m convinced that really good policing can create positive change,” she added.

“It’s about so much more than crime; it’s about equality, education and community cohesion. I am the right person to be in Rotherham and I will deliver the right outcomes at the right time, I hope I can convince you of that.

“I am joining a fantastic team, with a wealth of experience and I can’t wait to get started with them, I’m very lucky.

As for her priorities in Rotherham, she said: “Putting connections at the centre of what we do, I want to develop relationships with partners, the community and my team, this is the best catalyst for enhanced performance.

“With this comes a request: I’d like to ask you to take time to get to know us! We have good days and bad days, but we are and should always be ready to help.

“There is no doubt a gap between the reality and perception of policing in Rotherham, we can’t shy away from that, what I want to do is bridge that gap – working with you is how I’m going to do that.”