Hello - It's been a while and thought I'd pop in for a one off post.
Since I stopped blogging the Country has continued on a downward trajectory and this once fantastic job has followed the trend line. A few years back I would have been ranting about it but there are more important things in life to worry about. I used to sell my soul in my chosen trade and the past couple of years have learnt that I can't do it any more and find myself hanging on.
I am affected by the Winsor stitch up, losing increments but will escape anything that Hutton throws up in relation to my Pension. If I take into account some Army service I can go with a full pension in about 2 years time. I am physically injured and mentally shot but in a better place than previously. I don't work the long hours that I used to and feel healthier for it, although occasionally massage my ego with some extra specialist duty that results in jail time for those I play with. It might mean finishing at 3 or 4 in the morning and still having to make Early Turn but that's a personal thing and I'm not motivated by money as I don't incur overtime anymore.
I do find myself somewhat in a quandary about the financial situation the country is in. As one of Maggie's children I'm very small state minded and see the need for a smaller public sector and the need to cut pensions. It is a good deal we have and obviously unaffordable for the Country at large in the longer term, but that was the deal when I signed on the line and put my body through the grinder. I've fulfilled my side of the bargain policing the streets on shift for most of my service, and have the scars and pains to show for it. NuLabor dodged the big decision at the time on Pensions, however a double hit on Police, targeting Pay and Conditions followed by the Hutton change is in my opinion unfair as it presently stands. I doubt very much if it would have happened if The Police Federation had looked into Full Industrial Rights a few years back. I'd rather HMG looked at benefit tourism, as my eyes tell me there's plenty of savings to be made there, due to European integration, Who did vote for that?
I fear the writing is on the wall and this once Great Institution is heading for privatisation in some form. That means that the Office of Constable will become a thing of the past and all about indicators and bottom lines. If they understood policing and it was just about crime then OK what's the problem? - but Policing is about People and picking up the pieces where other agencies are so obviously failing. Police Officers care and do outstanding work with the Mentally Ill and Young People in a preventative way, along with so many other interactions that are not crime related. The question I pose is, if we don't do it - Who will? Just look at Social Service provision out of office hours and think who currently fills that gap. There are not many indicators in baby sitting children in Police Protection for several hours whilst waiting for Social Services to grind into some action.
I had the opportunity when out with an MP on patrol to tell it the way it was. He listened and knew I spoke the truth, however the truth is not in line with current government policy or I doubt personal MP career progression.
The facts are it's going to get worse before it's get better. The situation is what it is .. Do your best and try to be happy, and remember you can't change the world but you can possibly do real good for somebody on that next call. That's your reward !!