Blog: Alex Kioko
My name is Alex Kioko, and I am a CNC officer and BAME custodian with the Equalities Consultative & Support Network (ECSN), working out of Sellafield.
I was born in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya. I worked in the hotel industry there and in the UK. That was before I spoke to a friend of mine who is a CNC officer. He spoke so highly of the force and encouraged me to join. That was back in 2014, so I have been an authorised firearms officer with the force for nearly six years.
I am proud to protect and maintain the security of nuclear material and sites while also maintaining my fitness levels to a high standard using the gym to be able to carry out my armed duties effectively and in a professional manner.
Now, as a BAME custodian, I support other BAME officers and staff on the force and work to educate and inform our friends and colleagues about the issues we face.
An important part of my role is to identify recruitment opportunities in support of BAME within the force and to promote CNC BAME through social media and other platforms. It's also about increasing awareness of BAME among all CNC employees.
I'll do this through networking with other equalities consultative support networks and other external bodies such as the National Police Black Association, National Association of Muslim Police and National Sikh Police Association.
ECSN exists to provide social, moral, culture and professional support to employees with protected characteristics consisting of the main strands; age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief including lack of belief, sex/gender, sexual orientation and mental health, all supported by custodians and strategic allies.
In a nutshell, I offer moral support, guidance and advice to officers with grievances in line with the ECSN policy and guidelines for addressing issues with the support of ECSN officials and strategic ally.
The Federation provides support and advice assisting employees, especially in solving grievances and welfare matters. It aims to create a good working environment for all employees and a culture of inclusion in conjunction with the management.
The force is trying to encourage diversity through recruitment drives all over the country and through online adverts using BAME officers on its website to help reinforce inclusiveness messages.
I also want to encourage more officers, not just BAME officers, to come forward and be friends and to reach out to BAME communities and encourage them to join CNC and to act as contact points.
We also have a BAME webpage on our intranet, which is updated regularly with lots of information and details to help and support officers.
I am here to support all officers, not just those from a BAME background.
We have an excellent support mechanism in place; the Federation ensures that our day to day pressures, whether work-related or family, are dealt with effectively and in good time.
If you are reading this as a new recruit and are yet to sign up to the Federation, do it! I would encourage everyone to join because of the vital support mechanism it offers in all welfare matters.
Whether you are a BAME officer or not, you are not alone.
If you need support and guidance contact the Federation, me or ECSN custodians directly or by email. Everything you need to know is on the intranet.
CNC is an equal opportunities employer. All they need are individuals with positive attributes and right skills to be developed, no matter what your background.
If you think you may be a victim of hate crime in your workplace, please contact your Fed rep - they are there to support you.