“Overwhelmed” officers expected to “rush from call to call” are at risk of a “burnout”, say police chiefs.

These comments came from Anne Shuttleworth, the diversity secretary for the Metropolitan Police Federation, during a police and crime committee meeting earlier today.

The committee met to discuss how the Metropolitan Police Service deals with members of the public with mental health issues.

But Ms Shuttleworth was quick to highlight the problems frontline police officers, who she suggested were struggling with mental health issues themselves with stress pressures and said many simply “burn out”.

She said: “I think a lot of officers are overwhelmed with the volume of work coming in. They are expected to rush from call to call.

“We are all trying to do the same thing but we’re all struggling, and we do not take into account that we’re burning officers out.”

Earlier this year Freedom of Information requests revealed nearly 10,000 police officers in the UK took time of sick suffering from stress or anxiety last year.

The highest number of officers came from the Metropolitan Police Service, with 1,086 officers sick last year.

Ms Shuttleworth added: “We are trying to look after officers’ mental health but often it doesn’t work.

“Officers try to go to counselling and suddenly they find out it doesn’t work like it used to any more. If an officer needs 10 counselling sessions, they are not like to get that because shift work prevents it.”

Ms Shuttleworth did concede that officers have a “better understanding” of mental health issues.