Banned West Midlands Police Twitter inspector wins award

A West Midlands Police inspector who was stopped from using his Twitter account earlier this year has picked up an international award for his work on social media.

Banned West Midlands Police Twitter inspector wins award

Inspector Michael Brown, who has more than 21,000 Twitter followers, had his account suspended by West Midlands Police in February following allegations of inappropriate use of direct messaging and social media.

But Inspector Brown was presented with a trophy at the international SMILE Conference held in Birmingham. His Twitter account @MentalHealthCop is described in its profile as 'a venn diagram of policing, mental health and criminal justice.'

Insp Brown said: "I am thrilled to receive this award.

The officer's Twitter account.

"There are so many police leaders I admire using social media to great effect that to count myself amongst them is a privilege.

"It is particularly timely that it's been announced on World Suicide Prevention Day 2014.

"It highlights that my work only comes about because of the on-going need to raise awareness about mental health issues.

"I just hope it helps to continue to stimulate discussion in terms of both how the police service can better protect and serve the public, as well as how policing can affect the mental health of those officers who protect our societies from harm."

Inspector Brown has won awards for his work on social media in the past.

In 2012 he won the Mark Hanson Digital Media Award from leading mental health charity, Mind.

Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth said: "I am delighted that Michael's invaluable work on social media has once again been recognised by this prestigious award.

"Social media and mental health have recently come into a much sharper focus for the police.

"Michael's efforts have been instrumental in shaping the service's approach in both areas."

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