New relaxation room aims to boost staff wellbeing

Bedfordshire Police has created a dedicated relaxation space at its headquarters in Kempston to help improve staff wellbeing.

Aug 1, 2019
By Tony Thompson

The refurbished rest area, named The Breathing Space, enables staff and call handlers to take “some time out” after experiencing particularly traumatic events.

Bedfordshire police and crime commissioner (PCC) Kathryn Holloway, who came up with the idea, said: “Across the corporate world where I used to work, improving working conditions for staff especially in communal areas and providing them with a space for a few moments’ respite if their job is stressful, is seen as a hugely important factor in relation to morale and even in helping to improve the physical and mental health of the workforce.

“This is most definitely not a waste of money but a modest and well-deserved investment in our officers and staff and I was entirely clear that this is part of my duty of care to all of them even before the publication of this month’s Front Line Review urging forces to take wellbeing more seriously.”

Bedfordshire Police’s wellbeing coordinator Andrea Breitenbach said: “The Breathing Space room looks amazing and we have our PCC to thank for that. It will provide our workforce with a quiet space that can be used when some time out is needed. This may be as a result of dealing with a traumatic incident or just for someone needing a bit of time to collect their thoughts or practice some mindfulness.

“As part of the force’s wellbeing agenda, further breakout areas are being modernised, and I look forward to working closely with the PCC’s office to improve the wellbeing provisions for our staff.”

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