Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Cash Is King

I knew that cuts would be coming but not necessarily this financial year - things must be really bad. A extra 10% hit to an already non existent overtime budget means there is less than 2 hours per officer available each month.

The main savings will be made by scrapping civilian staff posts, those individuals will be deployed elsewhere within the force. Who will be back filling their jobs?, who but my team officers from the front line shift, which means less time off all round to maintain minimum staffing levels on normal working days. It's all to do with different budgets and police officer numbers having to be maintained.

I fully expect rostered days off to be cancelled with more than 15 days notice to save cash too. Not a good week you understand to be hearing advertisements about the Policing Pledge on the radio and watching them on TV. How much money is this all costing? Alright it might be Home Office money but I think they may have been better off channelling this towards improving visibility on the streets and not just promising it. That 80% patrol promise is only for community teams anyway. I worked on community and believe me that's an empty promise. If they were not red circled you just get the feeling up above would like to sacrifice a few PCSO's at 25k a pop.

The bosses are now pushing cash savings and not arrests alongside other targets. The dreaded hand over of prisoners between shift officers to save a few pennies can't be too far away. I've even heard one budget holder talking of bringing his cars in early on the last night shift to avoid the risk of overtime payments into rest days.

I'm not saying the police per se should be immune to cuts. We have grown fat under NuLabor like most in the public sector, but maybe we should be looking at some of the non jobs in existence. We don't tend to have them at the lowest levels.

Meanwhile the CID will carry on as normal, " You can't put a price on justice Bruv !! "

7 comments:

Blue Eyes said...

Things *are* really bad. But as usual the cuts will come from exactly the wrong places.

MTG said...

I posted this on 200's site but I suppose it has some revelance to your topic, SoC. Regards, Mel.

"I am not sure what you mean by a ’slag-fest’, 200 – you and copper bottom are probably holding on to a reading list denied me.

If you imply I enjoy critizing police, you are very mistaken. I want an intelligent, effective and honest police force. A police force in which the public has restored pride and maximum confidence. A police force whose only failing is never to make the headlines (every single day) with the ‘wrong’ news.

I do not want to complain about chief officers who are so underpaid they are reduced to stealing lipstick; abusing police credit cards that draw directly on public funds; police running drugs or scams and brothels or using Tasers as a means of torture etc.,etc.

What I would prefer to see is a conjoint operation where the existing police detritus is sacked WHOLESALE and replaced with recruits of acceptable quality. There must be thorough retraining and indoctrination of any retained officers – although I doubt the latter base would constitute more than 40% of a totally new service.

The new material I envisage would welcome criticism from the public and embrace the opportunity for dialogue. The standard dishonourable response would disappear along with the likes of copper bottom. These things must be done to arrest the present freefall in confidence and the ultimate hate confrontation where we begin to experience incidents of police shot on sight in the street".

Stressed Out Cop said...

Melv

Don't know if it does my old fruit.

I don't see the point of starting over again with the 40%. Most coming into the police do so with the best of intentions and perhaps their perceptions are skewed by contact with confrontational punters. On other blogs maybe you are seen as a chain yanker. This leads to frustrations and a them and us situation developing. Maybe you like the reactions !!

The new lot coming through? - some good - some not so and very non productive other than being there to answer calls under "pressure". Standards have dropped and we are recruiting people who not upto it and will never be "police officers" in my eyes. It's not about being seen to be nice - it's about being fair.

They don't get the opportunity to interact with MOP at all, apart from when dealing with jobs. This is very unhealthy and thus public confidence declines. They need to be taught - but some don't want to learn. We are not perfect and never will be.

We are trying to play catch up with community teams - but maybe we've lost the skills - it's seen as unsexy from within and outside but actually is the essence of policing. I bet you there are 10 year service officers who have never walked the streets in uniform alone ever.

Don't be swayed by the negative press - copper shocker sells papers. You should go to your local team and see what they are doing near you - maybe you might be pleasantly surprised.

soc

MTG said...

You oblige me to chew over meritable points, SoC. In the meantime, it remains my view that a complete strip is inevitable once main roof timbers are infected and weakened by generalised rot.

A single grab sample of the NPT serving my Village was always going to be unrepresentative. We have a highly intelligent, hard working young Sergeant and she is handicapped by a bigoted Inspector Clouseau and two equally buffoon PCSO's - who probably require daily assistance with dressing and feeding.

The entire Team is suffering from chronic 'Villager contempt' and only the Sergeant is smart enough to realise they have become a luxurious irrelevance.

Stressed Out Cop said...

Sounds like a scene from Hot Fuzz -

Merlin said...

SoC -

Very pertinent post IMHO, highlighting some disturbing trends.

One qualifying remark -

Not sure at all that the public sector (or the part which counts) has grown fat during New Labour years. I think quangos have, likewise non-essential stuff within the sector like excess layers of managers. I've also seen my own(non-policing)area of public service milked, milked & milked again of public funds by "consultants" (private sector, obviously), and we waste a lot on daft "initiatives" (often as a result of the daft consultancies). But the actual hands-on, front-line, doing-the-daily-job staff have been required to do more & more for less & less - less people & less resources.

Does your hands-on experience tell you that front-line policing became much more well-resourced - i.e. grew fat - during these New Labour years in office?

I don't think that the Army have grown fat, either. Not when troops keep getting clobbered because we can't even afford (supposedly) to give them the right kit.

Stressed Out Cop said...

Merlin

The community teams have put extra uniforms on the street - but they are not available to "response" but obviously still take some calls. The Robbery cars we have also put more numbers out but react to robbery/firearms only.

Team's put out the same or less, but demand is higher.

Around 2000 Home Office did put a few million for us to fight crime. I used to write the ops to bid for the money. 60k a time to flood the streets with crime cars or do pro active operations to combat drug dealing. It was good but that went 4/5 years ago so we don't do those ops any more.