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It sounds boring.  “What has it got to do with me?”

Doing it right is an excellent piece of advice and becomes more relevant by the day.

Policing is under attack from any number of directions. High Profile cases are being lost at Court that really should have been won.

Cruella and friends are constantly chiselling away at Stop and Search.

Our new best friend Sophie Khan is constantly waiting in the wings to sue us when someone gets Tasered.

Doing it right doesn’t even stop at the Front Line. Every aspect of everything we do should be done right. The Home Secretary would love to cut back on Stop and Search, even in the face of the seemingly rising volume of Knife Crime. If Stop and Search is Done Right and properly checked and supervised after the event we can robustly defend a) the individual Stop/Searches and b) the practice as a legitimate tactic. WE know it’s vital, but we have a better chance of retaining it if we Do It Right.  I’m in no way saying that you don’t, just putting my thoughts together.

When the evidence stacked up against a suspect is so very overwhelming it’s easy to take your eye off the ball and assume that the quantity and quality of the evidence will see it through the Courts.  When the evidence is all-conquering it’s time to challenge the procedure. How galling is it to get a case thrown out at Court because there has been a slip up in procedure or something has been forgotten?  It’s becoming more and more important to make sure the procedure and paperwork are 100% as well as the evidence.

It’s absolutely VITAL that Professional Standards Departments Do It Right.  Morale is at an all time low, we don’t need to be fitted up by our own.  If wrong-doing is found or suspected it’s perfectly right and appropriate for PSD/DPS to investigate that wrong doing, and prosecute if appropriate, but they too need to Do It Right. We’ve heard too many instances where PSD/DPS have not done it right, particularly in relation to Disclosure.  This does no good for anybody, is unprofessional, unethical and quite possibly unlawful. #DoItRight PSD and you’ll have much more credibility, support and possibly more satisfaction.  If it is possible to DISPROVE an allegation why would you not do that?  What possible satisfaction can you get from stitching up your own? #DoItRight and everybody benefits. Stop chasing targets and chase the truth for every allegation.  I have no problem hearing the truth, however unsavoury, but it gives me no satisfaction hearing stories of malpractice within PSD/DPS.

Authorising Officers, you Inspectors and Superintendents, you also have a duty to #DoItRight.  Every application from anything from a simple Subscriber Check to intrusive surveillance, don’t just sign it. Read it. Make sure it’s appropriate, make sure all the boxes have been ticked. Don’t just automatically sign it and move on, then we might not be where we are today, appearing in front of the Investigatory Powers Tribunal and even if we do we can defend it robustly and confidently.

Finally, it is only by Doing It Right that we can demonstrate, with confidence, how time consuming certain activities (like prisoner processing, report writing, Crime reporting etc) are and the true effects of budgetary cuts are having on routine Policing.  I know how tempting it is to cut corners. I know what it’s like to have the Duty Inspector bellowing at you to get back out on the streets, but sometimes that’s the wrong thing to do.  Sometimes it’s vital to finish what you’re doing before you move on to the next call.

Nobody likes “No Unit To Deal” but we didn’t ask to be put in this situation.  A call only becomes your responsibility once you’ve accepted it. You’re assigned, from that very second you are responsible for its outcome.  Once you are free to accept the next assignment, fine you’re in play. Let “No Unit To Deal” become the Management’s problem. It can become one of the statistics they’re so fond of to help show that we actually need more Bobbies, more Tecs, more Dogs, more Horses, more Cars.

I know it’s a pain in the arse. I know it doesn’t sit easily with the Police desire to get the Job done at any cost, however difficult. I know it doesn’t sit well with our desire to serve the Public well, but maybe by #DoingItRight we are actually serving the Public well, if that helps to justify the demand for More Not Less.  We all KNOW that all you get for Less is Less. The only thing you can achieve with Less is Less.

Work Smart, be Efficient, do your very best, but Policing still needs more Cops, not less.

In my humble opinion #DoingItRight in EVERYTHING may just help us to achieve that long term.

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4 thoughts on “#DoingItRight”

  1. Dorothy Williamson

    I remember a time when one of the bench marks for a job coming up to proof was if it could pass the Michael Mansfield test. Mansfield was good at his job and got many a scally off on technicalities. You can have as much evidence as you want, you can think the case is bang to rights but you only need one procedural cock up and the suspect will walk and all the hard work will be for naught. I’m not talking about corruption I’m talking about trying to get the job don for all the right reasons in all the wrong ways. Let me give you a scenario. An officer with an inner at one of the telephone companies gets a subscribers check through the back door. He’s saved about 4-6 hours on waiting for the authority and submitting it properly> He’s done it for all the right reasons and wants the details put onto the computer so surveillance can commence. The operator refuses. EVERYTHING gained by that subscribers would be fruit from the poisoned tree. So the officer threatens to have the operator stuck on. It is then pointed out that if that happens the pocket book caution or whatever action he takes is disclosable; highlighting the back door method to the defence. This is where DPS need to think long and hard. If they commit to a course of action they could loose the original job at court. They need to look at the reasons why certain things were done, they need to be much more circumspect instead of going in all guns blazing. Doing wrong trying to do right is as old as policing itself. DPS or whatever they call themselves these days need to look hard at themselves before they cast stones at others. Of course people who do wrong for their own gratification need to be dealt with but the majority of officers do wrong trying to get things sorted. Miss Kahn would probably still lable them as corrupt but she would be wrong. A police officer shouldn’t loose his job , the victim of crime should not be denied justice because on a busy day a copper tried to do the right thing

  2. Alan you’ve nailed it there lad. I continue to work in the dynamic police environment since my retirement, 39th year, yes I’ve seen it all come round, and round again. The police service, like the NHS, is in the throes of this Government experiment, an agenda is at play fuelled by ‘think tanks’ supported by Tory funds. Regionalisation will happen, the early steps they call ‘collaboration’ have already been taken. The service has changed forever, it remains to be seen if it’s for the better? All this is possible because of technological advancement in communications enabling the Home Office to have instantaneous and unprecedented levels of data about policing. All this is fine and dandy if it leads to an improved service to the public but all I see at this time is an increasingly disenfranchised service where my colleagues are asked hourly to deliver more with less and because we are a ‘can do’ service we make it work, whether that’s by taking no break for ‘refs’, juggling scarce resources or trying to manage expectations at first contact and we are doing this without the respect and support of the Government only too content to dole out 1% pay rises to their public servants whilst taking 10% themselves. It would be laughable but it’s not funny. I spend my working day watching a conscientious workforce flogging themselves to deliver a service 24/7 365 and #DoingItRight whilst being vilified in the press for doing a poor job. Gilbert and Sullivan got it right when they wrote ‘A policemans lot, is not a happy one’ never a truer word. I get what your saying Alan, I really do get it because I live it daily in the dynamic and ever busy communications arena where the public are all too quick to take the lead from the media and complain when we can’t meet their ever increasing demands for service in an ever increasing accusatory tone. So why do I stay, why do I still go to work every day? It’s because there is no job like it. It is the best job in the world, populated by honest hard working, right thinking, fine people who have a social conscience, believing they are #DoingTheRight thing call after call, hour by hour because they all are a credit to their Constabulary and the British police service as a whole. The Government does not know what they have got in their police service, NHS or public sector, they do not care about us, but it is because ‘we do care’ that we will continue to deliver for the public, we are here for you when you need us 365 24/7. Yes, working in the finest police service, the British police service, the envy of the world, brings something more valuable than any financial reward. How many Government ministers would do my job? Let alone how many could do it.

  3. You know and I know that it would only work if everybody did it together.Cop’s being cop’s would never all do it right.You can slag them off but I can understand some of the reasons why bring down more grief on yourself because grief is what you would surely get.
    I know you are 100% right but it will never happen.In my day 90’s we used to often say TJF my god it was great then now the job truely is f—.

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