We are currently experiencing network problems with the desktop version of Police Oracle. We hope to have these resolved as soon as possible.

Fed leaders to lobby Patel over pay

Frontline leaders will consider next steps in their pay battle with the government - and lobby Priti Patel directly.

The Police Federation’s annual conference will open in Manchester with a crunch meeting of senior members to decide what steps members can take next.

New leader Steve Hartshorn will put his case directly to Home Secretary Priti Patel for a revised pay offer.

She is due to address the conference despite the Fed issuing a statement of no confidence and abandoning the pay review body.

The Fed has changed its messaging, warning the government that the retention of officers – and therefore the success of its election commitment to increase police numbers - is now under pressure.

Grassroots members want to see a result as the cost of living has sky-rocketed, further eroding pay that the Fed calculates has dropped 20 per cent in real terms since 2010.

Ahead of the conference, new Chair Steve Hartshorn said: “Police pay is a legitimate concern that will have a knock-on effect to public safety through retention of experienced and newly recruited police officers.  

“There is an opportunity now to rectify and reposition the deal. Our campaign, seeking fair and equitable pay, must be listened to by the government.”

With anger growing among regional leaders over pay, the crux issue will be whether the Fed demands a right to strike, a move the top team is reluctant to use unless it’s a last resort.

The next milestone will be another court battle which pitches the entire staff side against the government.

A united front of staff associations and Police and Crime Commissioners mauled the government’s decision to impose a pay freeze, but so far the Home Office has refused to budge despite the collapse of the Police Remuneration Review Body (PRRB).

The Chief Police Officers’ Staff Association, the Police Superintendents’ Association, and the Fed have filed an application for Judicial Review claiming the PRRB isn’t independent.

Alex Duncan, National Secretary, has already warned the Chancellor that attracting new officers is now a critical issue: “It matters what kind of officers we’re able to recruit – we want the brightest and best to want to join the police – in service of their communities. But this won’t be possible if potential new joiners believe police pay doesn’t fairly reflect the demands of the job.”

Those demands were set out in a joint report by HM Inspectors today. It warned the focus on Uplift has been at the expense of existing officers. It praised the Uplift recruitment programme, but pointed out that this will not help with the lack of experienced detectives.

The policing organisations - including Chiefs and Police and Crime Commissioners - want a deal that comes with certainty.

The concern is that other than Uplift cash, there is no new real terms funding.

Taser roll-out is one example. Priti Patel is expected to announce Specials will be allowed to use them. But at least one force is rationing training places and as yet there is no confirmation over who will pay for Specials to join the Police Federation.

The Police Covenant - trumpeted as a step-change in officer welfare support - is currently going to be a re-branding of existing provision.

PCCs say the commitments coming out of the department - including pay - presume the police precept increases will cover it. It means they take the blame for tax rises in a cost of living crisis.

They were outraged by the Home Office’s decision to back the Treasury’s pay freeze.

They want a good deal for officers but the decision by the Home Office to take it from the precept leaves them exposed to anger from residents whose household budgets are also under pressure.

Leicestershire’s PCC Rupert Matthews told Police Oracle: “This is a really difficult one. We’ve come through the pandemic when officers did an amazing job. But a lot of businesses collapsed or went heavily into debt and are vulnerable to the smallest blip. There’s a real problem with going to the public and asking them for a pay rise.

“On the other hand, policing is a difficult, dangerous job. It’s beyond doubt that police officers need a good pay rise.”

Leave a Comment
View Comments 4
In Other News
Fed names and shames forces not paying Specials membership
Barristers vote for walk outs as Bar Council issues warning on court closures
Home Office under renewed pressure to resolve pay row
Scottish officers offered one per cent pay rise
BTP first force to give Special constables tasers
Downing Street plays down NCA appointment delay
Call for compassion for shoplifters rebuffed by PCCs
Fed pledges to go back to grassroots
Surrey shrinks vehicle fleet to save money
Morale has tumbled, Supers warn with new wellbeing data
PFNI confirms Lindsay successor
Hundreds of Police Scotland officers leaving following pension changes
Firefighters and council leaders warn of more legal action over pensions
More News