90 Seconds with PC Yasser Zubair
Role: Police Constable
Age at joining: 21
Length of service: 19 years, 15 ½ with Greater Manchester Police and the last 3 ½ with TVP
What inspired you to join the police?
A family tragedy gave me exposure to the police at an early age; seeing first-hand how they interacted with my relatives, witnessing the support and care they gave during a really tough time, made me realise it was the only thing I wanted to do.
Did you have any work experience prior to joining?
At 18 I knew it was what I wanted to do but I didn’t feel ready. I took a customer service role in a call centre to help develop my people skills; it was brilliant, as it brought me into contact with people from all ages, ethnicities and backgrounds. My communication skills developed no end and they are vital in policing, so it was good grounding.
What has your policing journey looked like?
I have primarily worked on Response; that is reacting to 999 calls – I love the unpredictability and having to think on your feet. Training and development has been constant throughout the years though. I’m trained in how to manage Category A prisoners and spent over 4 years as a trainers myself, training other officers on personal protection and was a lead trainer on the use of Taser.
For you, what are the good and not so good elements of the role?
The hard stuff is witnessing tragedy, or having to deliver bad news and realising that sometimes people are beyond help. This is completely outweighed by the good though; the team spirit and bond with your colleagues is unrivalled, you’re constantly learning and improving, its never boring – you live to expect the unexpected.
What has been the most challenging situation you’ve experienced?
The one that sticks in mind was a female attempted suicide several years ago. I was first on scene and had to take a cautious approach, using the techniques we’re thoroughly trained in I used my communication skills to get through and thought I had done enough to get through, but she jumped. Having survived the fall, I delivered vital first aid and support. 18 months later we received a letter, she was continuing to recover and recuperate and was thankful we saved her life.
Has anything surprised you about policing?
Shift work! I thought I’d hate it but I actually enjoy it.
What does the future look like for you?
Having been supported during my initial application process by GMP’s Positive Action team, who were able to provide reassurance to my family about my career choice, I wanted to do the same for others coming from diverse backgrounds – so I’m currently a member of TVP’s Positive Action team. After this, I aspire to do my NIE (National Investigators Exam) – the additional qualification you need in order to progress into the detective world… I’d love to be involved in counter-terrorism long term.
In your opinion what are the top 3 values a police officer should possess?
A strong work ethic. Drive. Commitment.
What’s your advice for people considering policing as a career?
Do your own research. It’s a career like no other – you can make such a positive impact. Speak to people who are doing the job – they’ll tell it like it is.
If you have been inspired by Yasser’s experience we encourage you to contact TVP’s Positive Action & Engagement Team: firstname.lastname@example.org