I write this to add to the communications about the above to all members. This week the National Police Chiefs' Council, the body that replaced ACPO, and more specifically the Chief Constables' Council (CCC) its main decision making body are to discuss this issue.
You will remember that The Winsor Reports included a nugget that it should be possible for CCs to make Officers redundant or subject to severance, like any employee in the big wide world. CCC at the time narrowly supported this, Mr Crompton voted for it. He tells us not that he had any intent to use it in SY, as according to figures there are more than enough Officers leaving the force (with or without pensions) to satisfy the cuts. In fact we are still recruiting just to keep pace with the targets. He could see the requirement for two or three forces that did not have this luxury and otherwise would go bust. The Federation argued against this as it would be contrary to the independent office of Constable and being a Crown Servant not an employee.
In the end the Police Negotiating Board could not agree and it went to the Police Arbitration Tribunal, whose decision was binding on us but not the Govt! The PAT rejected the idea, saying it was too fundamental a change to our Policing Model. The Home Secretary subsequently backed the PAT decision through gritted teeth, as she concluded her decision by saying 'for now'!
Guess what? we don’t have the negotiating bodies anymore. The PNB & PAT were both abolished by this Home Secretary. More drastic cuts have been and will be imposed across the service until 2018 and beyond. Police Staff cuts will not be enough for some forces, and so Chiefs & PCCs are looking at other savings. The Home Sec is playing clever and not suggesting redundancy/severance herself, she is trying to distance the Govt from these decisions. So she is leaving it to the NPCC to ask for it! If they don’t, and then go begging for money, she can ask why didn’t you ask for the tools to do the job!
The CCC have discussed this already and will do so again possibly Tuesday and/or Wednesday - good timing when they all invited to the Federation's National Police Bravery Awards on Tuesday Night!
Jim and I have discussed this again with Mr Crompton a couple of months ago. His reasoning had not changed, he did not want it for SY, but had to support his colleagues elsewhere, if they required it. However, in the last month Govt plans to cap the public sector pay offs have been announced. This was in the Tory election manifesto, expressing disgust at the high pay offs for nationalised bankers and BBC executives.
Well another guess what? - they plan are to cap pay offs at £95k, but bankers and BBC execs are exempt!
(NB I have read their plans four times now, it does not apply to normal pension rights, so your commutations are not included - yet!)
Mr Crompton has now changed his position and cannot support redundancy/severance of officers if they are not going to get their just compensation. He tells us that he will ask for the vote to be deferred, but if this is ignored he will vote against it. However there are some vocal big hitters that support it, so who knows which way it will go.
Even if they vote yes, it will not happen immediately. It will take primary legislation through Parliament to make the change. Voluntary Severance will have to be offered in the first place - only three forces have offered it so far! It will mean a change in our office, and so the call for full employment rights will be so overwhelming that Leatherhead will not be able to, or wish to avoid it.
You can find out more information about this issue by following us on Twitter, likening our Facebook page, reading our Ezine at www.sypfcopperconnection.co.uk, our website at www.southyorks.polfed,org , looking at the PFEW website at www.polfed.org, and read other police resources on the internet.
I will endeavour to update you all through the above methods.
SYP Federation JBB Chair 3 Meadowcourt
Amos Road, Sheffield.
0114 229 1381 07919 300375