I'vre read a few articles of late regarding the first wave of `slash and burn` from our new Government in respect of, amongst other things, the public sector. Of particular relevance to my previous life, is Steve, The Analyst's series on bonus payments for ACPO ranks and Insp Gadget's post today, about where the cuts may strike in his force of `ruralshire` and others across the land. I have little to add to these posts other than to acknowledge them here and commend them to others who may not ordinarily go there for a read.
All I feel I can add to these two good pieces at the moment, is my own immediate reaction to one small area, that was sparked by bullet point 4 of Gadget's post; "The number of sick, lame and lazy officers and staff employed on the Crime Management Team, where the job could be done by one Sergeant, better computer processing and a shortened system. Nowhere for them to go". I responded to this by leaving a comment amongst the countless others he always gets, mostly from those very much affected by the debate he inititates. I will repeat it here as my closing two paragraphs from my ten pence worth contribution to what, ultimately, will be impacting heavily on police forces across the land.
When I know of dedicated officers who have paid heavily for their years of servce through injury or deteriorating health that is aggravated by their work and then hear of those disgraceful senior management `bonus schemes` that were ladled out by the previous administration, how they were lapped up without complaint and now hear the complaints that they didn't want them in the first place....it makes me want to read Steve's piece all over again, because it just doesn't seem real - although I know it is. I know where I'd want the bonus money to have gone. I am so glad I am no longer a part of that. I liked to be able to look my front line officers in the eye, as I encouraged them to do to me.
My brother in law is occasionally sick, but by no means lame or lazy. His condition hits him hard when it comes but before that happens he is probably one of the fittest officers in his force. He has 27 years front line service and in my era would by now have had his condition recognised as deserving of a well earned medical pension – but there’s another `target` to reduce these. As a young Met Pc trainee, on a tour of New Scotland Yard, I was amazed to see Information Room’s `walking wounded`, officers with missing eyes, cracked backs and other serious ailments that made them less able to perform street duties. yet in there they were kings of the airwaves and the best lifeline you could wish for when it was you out on the streets needing support and guidance.
We looked after our less physically able in those days. I would rather have any one of these officers watching my back, anytime, anywhere, in any frontline- supporting department, rather than the entire plethora of nebulous numpties that have infiltrated the nebulous numpty departments laughingly classified as `support`. So bring on the surgery as you must, wield the bloody knife, but please.... cut the crap.