Historically, prior to the twenty-first century, the public perception of the police was that suitably qualified and trained police officers were responsible for all actions related to related to the protection of public safety and property within UK society, which was clearly differentialed from support services available to the police. However, the introduction of the Police Reform Act in 2002, witnessed a change in this approach, with civilians without the same powers as police officers, being introduced into what the government called 'The extended Police Family'.
The aim of this paper, based on an examination of the
changes promoted in the Police Reform Act (2002) has had on
the public perception of the modern day UK police force in
the twenty first century. Following a discussion of the
changes this Act has had on traditional police roles, the
study confirms that, as a result, the public perception of
the police, within the context of the 'extended family', has