Policy Details

On-line Communication and Engagement via Forums, Blogs and Social Media

Dated: 25 Mar 2016


POLICY TITLE: On-line Communication and Engagement via Forums, Blogs and Social Media

OWNING DIRECTORATE: Corporate & Strategic Services

AUTHOR: E-Communications Team Leader, Corporate Communications

CONTACT DETAILS: 101 Ext. 68385



AIM OF POLICY: To provide a framework for the Force to effectively engage and communicate via social media, whilst retaining quality control and minimising any risk to reputation, ongoing activities or operations.

BENEFIT OF POLICY: Allows the Force to communicate and engage with the public in a way which utilises the strengths of social media but also manages quality control, consistency, corporacy, and minimal risk to reputation as well as ensuring the use of simple, jargon-free language which is easily understood and relevant to the audience. Ensures that officers and staff are aware of the standards that are expected of them when using social media in a professional and personal capacity as employees of Northumbria Police.

REASON FOR POLICY: This policy has been created to meet the need for the Force to use social media and similar tools effectively.

Northumbria Police will communicate and engage with the general public and the communities it serves, via a range of social media, including message boards, blogs and social media networks.

Social media is a key tool for communicating, for critical incident management and operational planning.

At all times we will maximise the availability of on-line processes through which the public can engage with the Force, in line with the approach agreed by Strategic Corporate Communications.

Officers and staff must consider their use of social media activities whether in a work related or a personal capacity.  These must not cause any reputational risk to the Force, or any risk to organisational activities or operations and must be in line with all related procedures and guidance .

The E-Communications Team, Strategic Corporate Communications, will regularly review the Force's approach to the use of social networking as a communication and engagement tool, and will make recommendations to the Executive Board, via the Director of Strategic Corporate Communications, on an annual basis.

SOURCE DOCUMENT: Northumbria Police Strategic Corporate Communications Strategy; ACPO – Engage: Digital and Social Media Engagement for the Police Service

GROUPS AFFECTED: This document is intended for viewing by all police officers and police staff.


This instruction is designed to avoid discrimination and in accordance with the Human Rights Act 1998 and its underlying principles.