When Exactly Is This Home Secretary Going To Listen?

Crime Is Down, Reform Is Working.

How many times have we heard that?

Is Crime down?

Not according to figures released a few days ago, massively up when you include Fraud and CyberCrime, and just becasue we have never counted them before does not mean that don’t impact upon our resources.

Is Reform working?

That was the subject of a very heated debate on Twitter last night between some of our beter-known Twitterati, and I have to be honest I gave in and went to bed before the combatants reached an agreement I think.

However, my meagre contribution to the debate was this;

Returning to Mrs May’s speech to the Federation Conference earlier this year;

“So police reform is working. By cutting bureaucracy and central targets, we have saved up to 4.5 million police hours – the equivalent of 2,100 full-time officers.

The frontline service has been maintained and the proportion of officers in frontline roles has gone up to 91%.”

Frontline roles filled to a level of 91%>   Really?  In your Force are they?

4 and a half million hours freed up, 2,100 officers.  Sounds impressive.  Except that we have already lost 17,500 officers due to ‘Reform’, so that’s -15,400 in my book, working?  Really?

What do the Chief Constables think about it all?  They’ve joined in a bit late for my liking, they should have been banging their drums alongside the rank and file 4-5 years ago, but that doesn’t mean that what they have to say isn’t valid.

So what have they said?

The Chief Constable of Lancashire has said that his Force “will not be viable after 2020”  Mr Finnigan said the county faced the harshest budget cuts in England, which could potentially see the force becoming a “blue light” service, responding to emergencies only.   Mounted and dog sections along with road policing units could be lost and community policing cut.  Lancashire’s PCC called the cuts ‘Savage’ and predicted that they would have a ‘devastating effect’ on policing in Lancashire.

Jerry Graham, Chief Constable of Cumbria Constabulary, had thisa to say

Simon Bailey, Chief Constable of Norfolk Constabulary says that his Force is in a ‘Critical Condition’ due to the cuts.

Chief Constable Simon Bailey said the public needs to “think differently” about how the area is likely to be policed in future.

He said: “The scale and pace of cuts to the policing budget, taken together with unparalleled growth in complex crime and new demand, means the service has reached a critical point.

“The next round of public sector budget reductions will be a game-changer for policing in Norfolk

Even Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, Met Commissioner, believes that London will be put at risk by proposed police cuts that would see up to 8,000 officers axed.

London put at risk?  Aren’t the Police supposed to protect the Public?

I could go on, but I won’t. I’m sure you’ve got the message.  Not Theresa’s message, but the truer message.

How IS Police reform working?  If I have missed it, or the discussion on Twitter has solved the riddle please let me know.

In the meantime exactly when IS Theresa May going to listen to the people who know.  The people on the front line doing the job. The Chief Constables and PCCs in charge of them all.

Just in case that never happens I’m off to lie down in a darkened room and do my homework.

Crime is down, Reform is working,  Crime is down, Reform is working, crime is down, Reform is working.

A Letter To And From The The Tory Chairman 

I know you might find this difficult to believe, but I have a friend, a real person.

This friend wrote a letter to the Chairman of the Conservative Party about the budget cuts, particularly with reference to Policing.  Below is that letter, and the reply to it.

Make yourself a brew, sit back and enjoy;

I am a retired police officer living abroad. I watch with great sadness how our police are being dismantled. This weeks horrific news of an officer dying whilst doing his job will become a regular occurrence as numbers become dangerously low. I understand the need to balance the books but how much will you have to spend when crime grows to epic proportions, when terror groups get stronger and more destructive because we haven’t got the manpower to deal with it. Where we can no longer work in conjunction with MI to stop the terrorists BEFORE they kill civilians and destroy our cities. I worked in anti terrorism I worked in intelligence I worked in op Trident dealing witth the black on black drugs related violence. It is all manpower intensive. You need numbers to react so the matter is dealt with quickly and efficiently with the minimum of disruption and the safety of all is paramount. If you want to make Britain great and keep it that way then let us have the resources we need to do the job right. It is not just any job it THE JOB the unseen unheard work of the greatest police officers in the world needs to be given the respect from you and your party they deserve . Please rethink and stop the cuts Yours Sincerely 

Here is the reply

I am writing on behalf of the Chairman’s Office, who has asked me to thank you for your email. It is good of you to get in touch and make us aware of your thoughts. 
Police funding from central government revenue for this year will be over £8 billion, and I believe that the last Government took the decisions which will ensure that the police are provided with the resources they need to carry out their important work. Funding for the Police Innovation Fund will be £70 million. The police have achieved significant reductions in crime with reduced budgets, at a time when many – including the Labour Party – said that crime would go up.  

The police reforms the last Government introduced have seen the biggest change to the policing landscape in a generation. These reforms are working and crime is falling. Policing has been put back in the hands of the public through directly elected Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs), Chief Constables have been given greater operational independence by scrapping national targets, and police skills are being improved through the new College of Policing. 

Under the new Government, we will now finish the job of police reform to help back officers fight crime unimpeded, such as extending the use of police-led prosecutions to speed up justice and enabling fire and police services to work more closely together. A consultation on reform of the current arrangements for allocating central Government funding to the 43 police force areas in England and Wales was also initiated. The current model for allocating police funding, the Police Allocation Formula, is complex, opaque and out of date. The Government believes that the formula should be replaced by a simplified model as soon as it is appropriate to do so. 

I am very encouraged to see that the latest crime statistics show that nationally crime has fallen by 7 per cent in the last year, and by more than a quarter since 2010 – to the lowest level on record. 
The statistics were published in July by the Office for National Statistics. The bulletin reports on two independent measures of crime which are police recorded crime and the Crime Survey for England and Wales, which is based on victims’ experiences rather than police figures. 

England and Wales are safer today than they have been for decades, but there is always more to do. I am glad that my colleagues in the Home Office recognise the need to keep pace with the way crime is changing and are improving our ability to tackle emerging issues. The Government will now finish the job of police reform to help back officers fight crime unimpeded, such as extending the use of police-led prosecutions to speed up justice. I also look forward to seeing work which will improve the response to cyber-crime, and to enable fire and police services to work more closely together, so that the police have the ability to reduce crime even further. 

Thank you, once again, for taking the time and trouble to get in touch. 

Yours sincerely, 
Shannon Holland-Houghton 

Office of the Party Chairman 

Conservative Campaign Headquarters

The repetition in the final paragraph is not a mistake by me, it’s obviously a bit of Copy/Pasting that’s run amok and slipped through unnoticed.

Still spouting out the CRIME IS DOWN mantra, still trying to convince us that all is well, Police Reform is a good thing and they intend to finish it.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Who sees it slightly differently. Announcing that Met is likely to lose anything up to 8,000 officers under  the ‘Reform’ agenda, he had this to say;
It’s a lot of money and a massive change and as a result of that I genuinely worry about the safety of London.
We think we can expect to lose somewhere between 5,000 to 8,000 police officers.
For the past four years we have taken cuts in budget and we have just got on with it.
We have not waved shrouds – we are the only force to have kept police officer numbers up, today they stand at about 31,800.
I don’t have a huge amount of time for BHH, but I do know who I’d rather believe out of the two options above.

Maybe when they’ve finished their Copy/Paste practice they could have a go at not lying to the public, that might go down well.

My Crystal Balls Could Use A Little Polishing

Just under 2 years ago I had a go at predicting the future.

In What Does Your Future Hold? I predicted that G4$, supported by PCSOs and Specials, would be carrying out routine patrolling, together with fixed posts of low sensitivity, protection of insecure or vulnerable premises, reporting and recording of crimes etc. leaving sworn officers to investigate the crimes that have previously been recorded, arresting suspects, armed protection etc and all other duties which require a sworn officer to carry them out.

 Well, the good news is that neither G4$, $ERCO nor the new boys on the block, TSG Policing, have stepped in there,  YET. I still wouldn’t rule it out though.

 Instead, we have forces across the land that are actually reducing their PCSOs, in some cases, possibly ALL of them.

Dozens, possibly 100s, of Police Buildings have been sold off, normally to

 ever-vigilant Property Developers, ready to make a tidy profit from this shameful situation.  I don’t need to tell anybody that once they’re sold off and the proceeds spent/invested, they are NOT ever going to be replaced, ever.

Around the UK we are losing Police Dogs, Mounted Sections, Underwater Search or Marine Units, helicopter resources have been ‘rationalised’ under the NPAS and that doesn’t seem to be a roaring success.  In their place we have ‘volunteers’ on horseback

 patrolling rural areas on a Neighbourhood Watch type basis, at least one Police Force has a Special Dog Handler and in London, possibly elsewhere, some  Specials have received Level 2 Public Order Training, although I understand that this, and Response Driving Courses, is currently on hold.

Finally (I hope) Policing Strength.  At least one Force has predicted that in 4 years time they will down to 50% of their 2009 establishment.  Devon and Cornwall have just predicted the loss of 500 of their 3,000 surviving officers, and who knows how many in the years to come?

Just take a long, slow slurp of your morning coffee and think for a minute.  What if all the Forces in England and Wales lost 50% of their warranted officers together with their PCSOs.  Could we live with that? Could Society survive?  Certainly not in the shape we currently know it.

I have been predicting for a long time now that the Home Office has an ultimate target of 80,000.  Nobody in the know has ever contradicted that, told me that I’m wrong.  Somebody in NPCC/ACPO must have the ear of the Home Office and know the truth.  If I’m wrong TELL US, #Simples.

Buildings cannot quickly be rebuilt, officers cannot quickly be recruited and trained.  Make no mistake, the carnage wrought by this psycophantic government will be with us for years or even generations to come. IT WILL NOT END IN 2020.

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Just click on any of the images above. All images courtesy of Police Federation #CutsHaveConsequences.

David Cameron, Theresa May, Sir Thomas Winsor, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, not one of them has taken the slightest bit of notice of me or any other Police blogger that I’m aware of. The government have demonstrated their total arrogance when it comes to ignoring the opinion and advice of experts and practitioners. The Police Chiefs, in the main, have come to the party far too late, and in my eyes, at least, most of them lack credibility.  They should have fought for their corner a long time ago, presenting a united front right from the start.  Instead many just kept quiet until very recently, and some NPCC Chiefs even appear to support the government sometimes.

The public voted the Tories in, back in May. Camoron and his Cabinet Office have done the legs of Plan A, although I don’t suppose they realise that. Just as well there’s a Plan B.  

My inkwell has dried up, The Quill rests.

Why Don’t We Just Scrap The Police Altogether?

Not my idea I must point out, but it really is quite amazing the ideas that our academics and Think Tanks can come up with.

However, I was settled on my sofa, getting comfy waiting for the game with an odd-shaped ball to begin when the phone rang, it was Bronwen again. My word she’s been busy lately.  Apparently she’d overheard a group of academics nattering after a conference.

One of them was whispering that Steve White, chair of the Police Federation for England and Wales, had pointed out that 84 per cent of calls to the police relate to ‘non-crime incidents’. In an article appearing in The Guardian on 7 September Richard Garside, suggests that slashing police budgets provides us with the opportunity to rebalance public policy and roll back police mission creep into almost all areas of public service.

Does this mean what I think it means?  Radically downsize the Police Service, and by doing so, force other public Sector Services to take responsibility for their own areas of concern?

We all know that downsizing the police has been an issue of concern for certain Think Tanks for some time. Last year Professor Tim Hope wrote an article about abolishing the police service altogether. He proposes that we should establish a civil harm-response unit in its place, formed through the merger of police, fire and ambulance services.  Sounds very similar to something that a certain. PCC is proposing.

To quote the good professor, and I sincerely hope that I’m not infringing anybody’s copyright here

To serve the public good, the uniformed police service should merge thoroughly with the community health, ambulance and fire services to become a harm-response service with the delegated task of protecting and offering succour to the victims of crime. Alongside the other public services, the police should promote community safety as a means of promoting public health based upon a genuine public commitment to the well-being of the community, in all its many varied and diverse ways of life. Nor when its services are not required should it intrude upon the privacy and liberty of citizens.

To fulfil their role as a public service, a level of education and training is needed for entry into a profession that can stand alongside other public servants such as nurses, teachers and social workers instead of the in-service indoctrination of impressionable recruits lacking in either higher education or life-experience.

As for the many investigative and regulatory functions performed by the state, including law enforcement, appropriate agencies need to be formed and staffed by their own investigatory officials, with as much, or as little, powers of investigation and arrest as their statutory foundations allow them. Since much of this activity now takes place or is known about in cyberspace, regulatory and policing functions need to be focussed appropriately and competently by suitable agencies, rather than seen as simply another task to be grabbed by a squad of hastily trained police officers.

Finally, the maintenance of public order and safety should also fall within the capability of a civil harm-response service. Those political liberties upon which the police were founded did not sanction paramilitary force, nor do we need it now.

So I really must thank Bronwen for bringing these two shining examples of academia to my attention.  Where would we be without Think Tanks and Acacemics?  No rude answers please.

Reform Is Working (NOT)

Now I know what Theresa May is referring to when she or one of her cohorts trots out the Reform is working, Crime is Down mantra.

Silly old me thought that she meant that the government reforms were working, and we all know that they are not.

No, it seems she was referring to Reform, that well known Think Tank.

Reform have come out with an absolute corker

 

Charlotte Pickles from the Reform Think Tank is of the opinion that Policing is no longer ‘fit for purpose’.

With the benefit of my One Man Think Tank Head on I’ll hazard a guess that might be BECAUSE of government reforms.

So, what little gems does Ms Pickles come up with to pronounce that Policing is no longer fit for purpose?

Currently, in forces around the country, officers are spending hours every shift returning to stations to fill out multiple forms – often duplicating the information they are entering. In some forces, paper forms are being completed, scanned and sent to police staff to input into online data systems. Information that could be accessed online via a mobile device at the site of an incident instead has to be obtained via radio calls to a back office team. The potential productivity gains from modernising these archaic processes are considerable.

Has she never heard of mobile data terminals?  Even in DeadBadgerShire the cops have data terminals in their cars so that they only have to find a convenient layby to submit their crime reports etc, thus eliminating the need to return to base.  As a very unscientific straw poll maybe you could indicate in the “Comments” section whether your Force has, or is in the process of getting, mobile data terminals in cars or hand held?

Likewise the gains from ensuring the interoperability not just of cross-force systems, but of cross-criminal justice systems. The inefficiencies in the transfer of information between police and the Crown Prosecution Service is of particular frustration for forces.

Add to this the potential of face and voice recognition technology, predicative analytics and electronic monitoring tags and technology becomes not just a time saver, but a crime-fighting tool.

There’s a lot of psycho-babble buzzword bingo words in there, some of her suggestions are not the responsibility of the Police (e.g. Tag Monitoring), so the Police should not be branded not fit for purpose on that score, whatever her point is, Intelligence Units are being CLOSED in some Forces because of the cutbacks so Predictive Analytics are hardly likely to come into play there, again, blame the government.   Face and Voice recognition technology?  Limited use surely, hardly part of Front Line policing.

The police service remains largely built around traditional, but declining, crime types. Complex and serious crime accounts for an increasing proportion of police demand. This coupled with a shifting ‘frontline’ – one that is increasing off the streets and behind closed doors – means that forces need to reshape their workforce. The ‘sacred cow’ of neighbourhood policing must be challenged, as must the focus on officer numbers. A new operating model is needed.

So, off you go chaps and chappesses, go challenge your sacred cow of Neighbourhood Policing, I’m sure that Joe Public will love you for it.  It has taken generations for the Police Service to stop dictating to the public what sort of service it will get and consult on what they actually want, and Ms Pickles comes along and tell us to challenge it.  Any members of the public NOT want Neighbourhood Policing, speak now before reform get their way.

There is no doubt that the coming years are going to be extremely challenging for the police service. There is also little doubt that the current model of policing is unsustainable. It is also true to say, however, that cuts or not, the current model is no longer fit for purpose. To meet changing demand the police service must reform, and in doing so there is significant scope for further efficiency gains.

There you have it, significant scope for further efficiency gains, it must be true, a Think Tank tells us it is true.  Time to tell your Senior Management that you are being inefficient and need a new Policing Model, that will hardly make you unpopular at all.

So who exactly is Charlotte Pickles and what are her qualifications for telling us that our Police Service is not fit for purpose?

The Reform website tells us this about her;

Charlotte joined Reform as Senior Research Director in August 2014. She has a particular focus on welfare reform, criminal justice and cross-cutting issues.

Prior to Reform Charlotte worked in a variety of roles covering working-age welfare and pension reform, criminal justice, poverty and social exclusion, and service delivery. She spent two years as Expert Adviser to Iain Duncan Smith, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, helping to design and deliver the Government’s welfare agenda. Before that she was Policy Director at the Centre for Social Justice where she authored several publications, including a major report on street gangs.

Charlotte also spent time advising a major police force on their approach to young people and youth crime. Most recently she worked as a management consultant in the public sector practice of a global consultancy firm.

Anybody who spent two years as Expert Advisor to IDS can’t be all bad, can they?

Critical Mass

CRITICAL MASS

1. (Nuclear Physics) the minimum mass of fissionable material that can sustain a nuclear chain reaction
2. the minimum amount of money or number of people required to start or sustain an operation, business, process, etc:

Well, we must just about be approaching Critical Mass in UK PLC any time now.

I make no apology for concentrating on the wholesale slaughter of our Police Service, nobody would be surprised by that, but it doesn’t stop there does it?

17,000+  fewer Police Officers, with yet more savage cuts to come before 2020.

In the last 4 years the British Army (not including Ghurkas) has been reduced by 19,000 Regular Soldiers and Officers.

In the same period the Royal Navy has been reduced by approx 5,000 and the Royal Air Force by approx 8,000.

The Crown Prosecution Service has seen its budget cut by 25% and staff numbers reduced by 2,500.

Yesterday we heard the news that Addenbrookes Hospital had been graded Inadequate and placed in ‘Special Measures’.  I have to say that my personal opinion, for what that’s worth, is that Addenbrookes is NOT a bad hospital, it is an excellent hospital made bad by the government cuts.  The ‘highlights’ of the Care Quality Commission’s findings were;

  • A “significant shortfall of staff” in a number of areas resulted in staff being moved from one service to another and patients being cared for by workers without relevant training
  • Pressure on surgical services meant routine operations were frequently cancelled and, despite some outstanding maternity services, staffing issues led to regular closures
  • Important messages from the clinical divisions were not highlighted at trust board level
  • Introducing the £200m EPIC IT system for clinical records affected the “ability to report, highlight and take action on data” and meant medicines were not always prescribed correctly
  • Inspectors found “caring staff who did everything they could for patients” and “efficient” and “effective” emergency and major trauma departments

Surely to goodness the first two findings are indicative of budgetary strangulation?  ‘Not enough staff’ is usually caused by ‘not enough money to pay them’ rather than a physical shortage o staff or inability to fill vacancies.  The final point above is an indication of excellence in my book.  If the staff are ‘Caring’, ‘Efficient’ and ‘Effective’ then there is another reason why the hospital is under-performing, isn’t there Jeremy?

The Marine and Coastguard Agency is crumbling around our ears and the stalwarts who were not made redundant are now leaving the Service, presumably due the manner in which they have been treated.

Privatisation of Prisons has had a good effect, most of the lurid headlines we have seen in the last couple of years have taken place at privately run prisons I believe.

The list goes on and on, but getting back to my main point;

I don’t know what it is but somebody out there must do, and is keeping quiet;

There MUST be a Minimum Number of Police Officers, Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Doctors, Nurses, Coastguards, Lawyers, etc etc etc that we need for UK PLC to run efficiently and be safe and sustainable i.e. a Critical Mass.  I truly fear that we will soon go below that number, if we haven’t already.  All of the above services are NOT traditional Industries that sell things to make a profit, they all need money pumping into them to make them work and if you strangle that flow of money something breaks, doesn’t get done.  I have seen the question asked many times before – “What shall we stop doing in order to meet your requirements?”  I haven’t yet seen one single answer.

Some time ago I said that I had heard that the Home Office were looking to reduce Police Numbers as low as 80,000, nobody within the Police Service or the Home Office has ever challenged that figure and told me that I am wrong.

The Armed Forces are an embarrassment, through no fault of their own.  I am immensely proud of our Armed Forces, but they can’t get the job done with slashed numbers either.

Three years ago the NHS was the ‘poor cousin’ worldwide;

There were just 2.8 doctors and 8.2 nurses per 10,000 population in 2012, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

In comparison, the other wealthy countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) had averages of 3.2 and 8.9 respectively, with the EIU describing the UK figures as “worrying” due to the link between staff numbers and patient outcomes.

n terms of physical resources, the report said the situation was even worse, with just 2.8 hospital beds per 1,000 population against an OECD average of 4.8. In Japan there were 13.4 per 1,000.

The UK also had less than half the amount of equipment – such as computerised tomography (CT) scanners and magnetic resonance image (MRI) units – than the average, at 6.8 and 8.7 per million population.

Overall it ranked just 28th out of 30 countries for healthcare resourcing, with only Israel and Turkey coming out worse.

That was three years ago, how bad can it have got since?

Fiddling While Britain Burns
Fiddling While Britain Burns

And all the time the pompous idiots that rule this country sit back and make sure that the bankers etc etc can have their bonuses back and not have to suffer like ‘ordinary’ people.

What makes it all worse, unforgivable even, is that this a cold, calculated, deliberate act by Camoron and his Cronies.  Aided and Abetted by self-serving businessmen and women, Senior Police Officers, possibly even senior Service Personnel, Civil Servants all selling out for a Knighthood or a Peerage.

Now we know exactly what is meant by the words “Reform is Working”

 

Safe to say I’m not in line for either of those but I might just be on some kind of list by now.

Austerity? More Like Audacity If You Ask Me

Are our esteemed government still expecting us to believe that the myriad of swingeing cuts that we have endured, plus the ones still ahead, are anything at all to do with the mystical Austerity?

I did, for a while, swallow the fallacy, but no longer.

I’m not going to bore you by listing all the impositions we have endured under the Austerity banner but in reality I suspect that they are more to do with the megalomaniac Camoron’s vision for the future and cementing his place in political history.

I should have smelt a bigger rat when Tom Winsor was announced as the Preferred, and ultimately, Successful, Candidate for the head honcho’s job at HMIC.  Gobsmacked was I, but never in my wildest dreams did I realise that was just the beginning, the precedent for the travesties to follow.

The knighthood duly followed, should have seen that one coming, they might just as well have printed it on his Independent Reviews.  It was never really in doubt.

Now we have the latest, but surely not the last, piece of arrogant insanity with the news that Chief Fire Officers may well be eligible in the future, to be appointed as Chief Constables without ever having served at any lower rank in the Police Service.  I shouldn’t really worry about this, they are going to receive some training from the College of Policing, when they’re not too busy training the Direct Entry Inspectards and SuperNintendos.  What could possibly go wrong?

Best of all you don’t even have to take my word for it, you can read all about it here.

I’m not completely against change, I can see some benefits, and I have never been opposed to Efficiency Improvements, I can even see how Emergency Services can benefit from sharing premises, possibly Control Rooms, but that does not mean that they need to share a Command Structure or even a vehicle.

No doubt our old friends Policy Exchange have had some input into this idea, and maybe in a year or two there will just be one Emergency Service, with some poor soul trying to keep all his/her balls in the air.

I’m going to crawl back into my hole now, please wake me up when Spring arrives and the nightmares are over.

Does Theresa May Understand ANYTHING About Policing?

The recent claims by the National Audit Office that the Home Office do not possess enough data to fully understand the impact of the #cuts being made to Policing have been widely reported.

The basic story, from June this year, can be found here.

It was further reported that the Home Office weren’t even monitoring the effects of their cuts on the Police Service. You can find that story here.

My opinion, Mrs May, is that if you don’t have enough data, and you aren’t even monitoring the situation properly, you can’t possibly understand what is happening, and whether your policies are effective or not.

So, what else don’t you seem to understand then?

You don’t seem to understand that Stop and Search is an essential tool in an age when Knife Crime, in particular, seems to be on the rise.  The issue, surely, is not that Stop and Search should be cut back but that it should be used properly, in line with PACE and the Codes of Conduct, not to fall in line with the transitory whims of a politician.

You don’t seem to understand that a major piece of work like Tom Winsor’s Independent Review needs to be accompanied by a professionally crafted Risk Assessment and Impact Assessment.  Your own departed has admitted that no such Assessments were carried out by (then) Mr Winsor, yet you put them in place regardless of this and Mr Winsor was subsequently appointed Head of HMIC and given a Knighthood. A total lack of understanding by yourself, and others, surely?

You don’t seem to understand that Police Officers, and any other members of the Public Sector, will be understandably angry when you, and the government you are a significant part of, change the law in order to make your pension reforms lawful, and then claim that you have to accept your pay rise and pension package because the law won’t allow you to decline it.  The answer to that is simple, change the law like you did for tens of thousands of others. Not difficult to understand that.

You don’t seem to understand that we are told repeatedly, and correctly, that the biggest element of the Policing Budget is Manpower, yet you try to persuade us that there are savings to be made by adopting a National Procurement Model.  Even IF this was a good and efficient idea, and even IF it saved money from the Policing Budget it would be a mere drop in the ocean compared to staffing costs.  Is it that you don’t understand or are you trying to deflect our attention from something else?

You don’t seem to understand that if you cut, cut and cut again at Police numbers, eventually we will have to stop doing certain things that we have traditionally done.  Only some of those will be reasonable.  It will not be reasonable to stop visiting the scene of burglaries for example. It would not be reasonable to only concentrate on crime because, contrary to your beliefs, Police Work involves a huge amount more than just Crime, Crime which is now rising again by the way.

You don’t seem to understand that Policing difficulties cannot be solved by throwing a few diesel Astras and iPads at them.  Yes, we should always keep up with the latest trends in technology, but as an Aide, not as a replacement for Cops.  Also, Technology itself tends to be expensive, so where are your savings there?

I’m not sure whether you fail to understand that Policing needs numbers, or whether you are blindly following a Camoron diktat to “Reform the Police at all costs”.

You don’t seem to understand that the General Public expect their government to keep them safe, and the way that is done is predominantly by using the Police Service, a Police Service that you are systematically annihilating.

You don’t seem to understand that it’s OK to listen to the views of others, many have been there’s walked the walk, and know what they’re talking about, but you and this government in general, seem hell-bent on ignoring the Voice of Experience.

I’m off to enjoy my weekend now, content in the knowledge that you’ll never read this, and even if you did you would ignore it.

Policing UK – The Analogy

it occurred to me this morning, while munching on my CocoPops (I don’t do muesli), just exactly what is happening to British Policing in the name of Reform.

Take the instance of a brave Gladiator, struck down in combat with one arm severed, and a leg barely hanging on.  What is going to happen to that brave Gladiator?  In the absence of the wherewithal to heal his wounds he will surely die.

Policing is such a Gladiator.  We have seen Central Government hack at our limbs until we are now, surely, mortally wounded. Is there anybody out there willing or able to stitch or cauterise our wounds?

If the answer is “NO” then our life-blood will surely ebb away, just as certainly as that of our brave Gladiator, and the end result must surely be the same, a certain death.

Is this what Government intended? If not, they must have surely been Reckless in the extreme in their actions.

The blood is already flowing, our life-blood is ebbing into the barren soil, the NHS are also struggling so it’s not certain if the Ambulance and Doctors etc will arrive in time.

Only one course of action left, put AMIP and the Coroner on standby, looks like there’s a Murder Enquiry on the horizon.

Has Anybody Got A Spare Priest?  Policing UK Is In Need Of The Last Rites

I am indebted to Inspector Gadget (again) and @obbsie for stimulating my grey cells once more. Mr Winsor’s (sorry, Sir Tom’s)infamous ‘blue collar’ comments have possibly been forgotten by now, but Gadget is quite right, we must NEVER forget them.

Sir Tom has NEVER apologised for that comment, NEVER justified that comment and NEVER withdrawn that comment, yet over the weekend we had dozens of off-duty ‘Blue Collar’ officers in Sussex offering to pitch in and help with the tragedy at Shoreham.

Sir Tom and Cruella are presiding over the destruction of Policing UK.  Whilst they are not directly responsible, it seems beyond the realms of coincidence that Police Scotland and PSNI also find themselves in turmoil at the moment.

Returning to Policing E&W, Sir Tom rose from relative obscurity as a previous Rail Regulator and was chosen to write a couple of books for HMG, and so was born Winsor’s Independent Review of Police Officers’ & Staff Remuneration & Conditions.

Then we had the totally bizarre scenario whereby Winsor claimed a few quid in Expenses, for paper clips etc, but omitted to claim his considerable fee for his work.  However, he didn’t need to worry, Chief Inspector HMIC, the very first non-Police a Officer to attain that position, and a Knighthood were to follow.

Under their patronage we have already lost 17,000+ officers from England and Wales, the equivalent of several small Police Forces.  17,000 is the equivalent (just taken alphabetically) of Avon & Somerset, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Cheshire, Cleveland, Cumbria, Derbyshire, Devon &

this Is What 17,000 Fewer Cops LOOKS Like

Cornwall, Dorset and Durham without ONE SINGLE OFFICER.   OR, imagine a huge swathe of Southern England without any Police;

Kent, Surrey, Sussex, Dorset, Devon and Cornwall and Thames Valley, NO POLICE for thousands of square miles.  That’s what May and Winsor have done, and they’re just about top play Double Or Quits.

We are due to lose a similar number in the next few years.  Can you imagine Greater London without one single officer?

This Is What 34,000 Fewer Cops Might LOOK Like
This Is What 34,000 Fewer Cops Might LOOK Like

In the midst of this we’ve had to put up with Nick Herbert and Priti Patel complaining about Police not being available to deal with their issues. Naive? Or Police Baiting?

So what other delights have the Dynamic Duo left us with in the past few years (yes, seems like more, but just a few really)

  • LESS Air Support
  • FEWER Dogs
  • FEWER Horses
  • FEWER Vehicles
  • FEWER Police Stations/Offices
  • FEWER Front Counters

Factor into this an equivalent number of Police Support Staff job losses, again with an equivalent number to come, and it gives you an idea of the IMMENSE scale of May and Winsor’s Police reforms, although I’m not sure that Reform is the right word.

I have said before, that I heard a rumour that Home Office were trying to get the number of warranted officers down to 80,000, well they’re well on their way to that.

I have also said before that there is surely a number below which we must not go, although I don’t know what that number is.  Anybody care to enlighten us?

 

The Police Service of England and Wales is not just dying, it is cruelly being strangled, murdered, and the suspects are hiding in plain sight.

Whatever else you think of my blogs, love them or hate them, as Gadget says, we must never forget the Blue Collar Comment, because that tells us everything we need to know about how Winsor thinks of our proud, brave, fine Police Service.