How is your retirement looking today ?
David Cameron gets endorsed, but I can’t help thinking the country is being playful ……..
As we digest the latest news of a Conservative run country until 2020, with no vision – I set about a task of contemplation. There should be reflective references by me from the past five years – but then do we really need them ? It all seems pointless, because in the words of a once famous actress ‘You ain’t seen nothing yet’
I have already referred to the salary losses of officers new and old in January 2014, some officers losing in excess of £60,000 at the most important rank, that of constable. I felt somewhat angry as we saw our salary eroded by a clever tactical use of the media by our Tory friends, and even more angrier as officers when given an opportunity to ‘vote for the right to vote’ for strike action or action of some sort, they failed in their thousands to do so. The reasons for me are obvious, the officers expected to vote did not do so due to a complete lack of interest in anything they did, could do or had a view on regards policing local matters. Now, I know this to be true as I lead and manage, investigate alongside and work with many officers of all ranks, both uniform and non uniform. The majority are what is described by a variety of ministers as ‘frontline’ officers couldn’t give a toss about voting, politics or local PCC ( Police Crime Commissioner ) issues. It is all that most can do to get through their tiring shift, or indeed to stay out of bother from over zealous managers wanting promotion on the back of good police work. Or indeed by managing what they perceive as bad police work – then writing it up as a positive in their own favour when they ‘managed’ the situation. Yes, there are some clever bastards in our midst.
Either way the fighting ranks will suffer. And yes, that’s how the majority see it. My shift, colleagues and some managers are currently working way above what would be expected as a safe and carefully planned environment. The work they do, sometimes 28 hour shifts, returning to work for court within 5 hours for remands etc. …goes completely unchecked. I too find myself having to do the same hours, but in the same breath tell my colleagues that what they are doing is wrong. It’s a no win situation that if we didn’t do these things the public, safety and investigations would suffer.
Then of course disciplinarys would would increase even further. I am currently witnessing officers earning low wages ( average Constable take home country wide is £404.60 a week ) suffering from mental health issues, over tired and making basic mistakes on a daily basis. And yes, some do carry tazers. I do what I can to protect them, but only what I can, which is basically supporting them utilising my 28 years police service experience. A carefully written note on a situation protecting the officer – if needs be – is sometimes all that is needed, it also helps build a protective picture when that so called friendly manager ‘writes up’ that same officer as evidence of their ability to manage. Trust me they won’t care if PC Smith gets the boot if it means they get another pip. I still care that’s why I do it. And of course where an officer under performs or purposely causes an issue I deal with that too. You would expect that wouldnt you ?
It’s a horrible situation brought about by the last five years of government, excessively intrusive management locally, and very poor management skills. Something will give I assure you. I see it coming.
As more measures are introduced by todays endorsed ministers across the UK and public service is hacked to pieces again, I ask you this. At what point will the police service of England & Wales break down completely ? It is already in pieces, littered with poorly motivated officers, increasing sick records and mental health issues, then surely the only way is down. Some would say we can’t take any more cuts, but there’s nothing like being tested is there ? As crime figures wonderously fall the government will continue to cut back and enlist their friends at the BBC to assist. Whenever I see an overweight police officer in glorious colour on the BBC website I do know some bad news is coming. First off the public see the picture and a mindset is prompted of lazy, fat officers that need to ‘ Do Their jobs properly’ Within days new measures are cleverly introduced, cutting back on pay or services and public sympathy is non existent. It’s a clever tactic often used against all public services by the government of the day. The way they did it with the NHS using a hospital in the midlands as a catalyst was nothing short of disgusting. How low will they stop ? There are of course many more examples and options that would even make the deceptive minds of ‘Yes Minister’ run for cover.
Of course that same public still needs your help as an officer of the law, and expects it every time they call. You would have thought they would care a bit more that the officer attending is more concerned that he or she can’t pay the mortgage than investigate the wrongdoing you are reporting. It’s only natural, we all worry about finances when they are slashed. Be that your own or your local Govt war chest. If a force is happy to half pay an officer suffering from terminal cancer after six months sick then trust me the ‘heartless’ I see every day from our government and so called leaders becomes the ‘heartless’ that I see from within our service every day as well.
As the next two years race by we will see further cuts to police budgets, but of course that doesn’t affect an officers ability. We will also see cuts to pay, or reductions in pay rises, this of course does cause an issue because an unhappy cop is not a happy investigator. I know. It’s now all about how much they can take from public service or deny you as the public and still justify away from themselves. And this goes for all public offices. Teachers, NHS, social care and Emergency services will all get the Tory ‘treatment’ as the months cruise by in to 2016 – and more money is removed from agencies that need it so badly.
This Govt will give you ‘buy lines’ like Baby P, and talk about Paedophiles in Rotherham, appealing to the less educated and currying favour with all. Because of course sexual abuse is the trigger, we all hate that, it’s an easy way to get us all on side. And when it’s time we can blame someone, not just anyone, but someone. We need a name, a person to vilify, a hate figure who needs sacking, a picture to point at, without any knowledge of how they worked, or who they saved or what value they give, we just need them destroyed. Trust me the Govt will give you that person, on a plate with plenty of seasoning.
The Govt of the day endorse it, they disolve their responsibility to PCC’s the same way they did years ago to banks when they handed over interest rate changes. Many didn’t see thatwhen the Govt made the changes they lost votes. Clever and easy, pass on the responsibility, be that banks, PCC’s or the next divolved fall guy.
When the public services need slating, reducing or down paying you can always trust your local friendly Govt to show the general public the way. Pointing furiously away from Parliament, that sacred building where offences are committed, frauds are carried out and money is stolen. We all know it but do nothing about it. So I suppose with MP’s being endorsed to steal funds via expenses and many not being criminalised then there is nothing to be concerned about. Why bother ? How can any of us expect to have the will to fight when the law makers and politicians go unchecked as they run away with suitcases full of cash. Quite literally.
I joined the police service to serve, to save lives and to help others. I have done so many times, but not in every way. I would like nothing more than to walk in to my local MP’s office and arrest her for fiddling her expenses, but I am not allowed to, even when they did. When I stated we should do so I was told to pipe down. We need to make an appointment apparently if we want to execute a surprise warrant (think about it) I cannot trust a person who has committed criminal offences to run my area and in turn my country. But we all do, and no more so than an MP. Endorsed to steal and not give back, allowed to serve prison terms and return to office and never challenged when they reduce public services, undermine those meant to protect and then turn against the very people there to protect them.
Its a terrible state of affairs, but then I suppose in a terrible state of affairs that’s all we can expect, a terrible state run by terrible people voted in by an electorate that has lost the will to even care.
To say I am worried about our police service is an understatement, to say that people like this are trusted to run it and make legislation to protect you after all they have done is terrifying.
Today signals some serious thought. And it turns to reirement, I feel like all my fighting has been done, completely melted down and lost, eroded by years of Govt mischief that has stripped us down to the bone, in pursuit of their own goals. Yes, the higher you go the more you will do to go higher, and for me to do that the more sorrow you most certainly will create.
The police service is not even close to the career I joined back in 1987, it doesn’t contain the same principles of investigation nor the people to do so. Many officers cannot be bothered for all the reasons I have discussed. And who can blame them, they look to Parliament and see more criminals within those walls than they saw in the custody suite last night.
So why should they care ? You don’t, I don’t, they don’t, we all don’t.
But of course we do. And that’s why today, VE Day is so important, because we cannot lose that spirit, not just yet, something has to give, and it will, from within I have no doubt. So for now I take comfort from the fact that the majority voted against this whitewash, our constitutional system is the first thing that needs to go.
So can we really rely on the Houses of Parliament to address that issue, I mean after all, what’s in it for them ?
We continue to serve and we continue to protect our country, as cheap as we can without fear or favour, and without the keys for the Ford Capri as well. I mean what would Gene Hunt say ? I feel for once he may well be completely speechless.
Till next time ….. G’day from the office.