Pre-election period (previously known as purdah) will begin on 18 March 2024


The elections for local councils and a new Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire are scheduled to take place on 2 May and the pre-election period, previously known as purdah, will begin on 18 March 2024.

We wanted to remind you about the guidelines and restrictions on publicity during the pre-election period.

The neutrality of the police service – from a political perspective as well as with relation to issues and causes which are especially emotive or sensitive – underpins the legitimacy of the force. The public should be confident that officers and staff will serve them fairly and impartially.

Please consider carefully how the things that you do and say may be perceived by others. This is especially important in periods of heightened sensitivity, such as in the run up to an election, to ensure that our messages and actions are not perceived as being advantageous to a particular candidate or political party. The primary restriction is on pro-active publicity which particularly relates to candidates and other politicians involved directly in the election. However, colleagues should avoid putting themselves in a position which could be used by a candidate to support their campaign and bring the impartiality of the force or their judgement into question.

Some key things to remember are:

  • Any communication from candidates or members of the public referencing the election must be sent to the Election Single Point of Contact, David Morris for recording on the contact record:
  • Staff should take care when sharing information on social media relating to the election.
  • All staff need to be very careful to avoid promoting anything that could be perceived as of benefit to a given political party or candidate.

A joint protocol for the pre-election period can be found on the Staffordshire Commissioner’s website.