MDP: Our Partners in Protection

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Alvaro Villagomez
  • 100th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

The Ministry of Defence Police is a civilian police force with over 50 years of operation, that works closely with U.S. bases in safeguarding assets, personnel and operations around the U.K.

MDP’s main role is to uphold local jurisdiction while engaging with the local community and working side-by-side with the 100th Security Forces Squadron at Royal Air Force Mildenhall to maintain installation security and deter potential threats to the base.

“We work together with regards to covering terrorist threats towards the base,” said Police Constable John Kelly, authorized firearms officer. “You’ve got Security Forces who predominantly works on the inside, almost exclusively, and we’re on the outside of the wire, engaging with the local community to stop the threat from ever reaching base.”

MDP officers work around the clock patrolling the outside domain covering all areas within the tri-base area. The MDP station is composed of 11 officers who work in 12-hour shifts to accommodate the 24-hour schedule they must be on duty. MDP officers serve in different roles within the community.

“Our officers are also here to provide information to the community, whether it be military members arriving on station or local community members looking for guidance,” said Daniel Sparks, senior police officer and temporary police sergeant. “There is no reason to be frightened of us, we’re in no way out to get anyone. We’re trying to spread awareness that we’re here in Mildenhall and ready to help with any questions members might have.”

Not only do they enforce the law, they also hold weekly newcomers briefings where they offer advice and guidance on the rules and laws of the U.K.

“We have dedicated units who go out into the British public as well as run campaigns, provide training, and raise awareness of the repercussions of drink driving,” said Kelly. “We’re looking to bring the same type of training to U.S. bases by working with the commander and educating military members on viable information.”

The MDP Police is currently invested in educating service members and spreading awareness of the resources they offer to the community. Creating a relationship within the community and keeping the public safe is the top priority for the MDP.

“I think the biggest point from us is that we’re all about education and trying to help people,” said Kelly. “We know that it’s difficult trying to live and work in a different country with diverse rules of which some not everyone may understand. We want people to enjoy their time here in the U.K. and ensure members are aware that we’re here to help.”