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Blues and Twos - Police & Law Blog is a an amalgamation of thoughts, feelings and observations on news, current affairs and UK policing in general. Our police blog has contributions from officers of the rank of Inspector (Organ Grinder) down to Constable (Monkey). Blues and Twos - The Police Officer's Blog

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Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Politically Independent Police

Recent press release from the Police Federation

Whilst accepting it is right that the police service cannot, and should not, stand still Police Federation chairman, Jan Berry, warns against any change which removes the operational and political independence of the police.

Mrs Berry says: “It is right that there should be local accountability of policing but we would not wish to see the erosion of an independent operational police service with local politicians’ micro managing and attempting to influence operational decisions. It is also essential that the current reforms being proposed by the government are properly thought through and implemented before we embark on the next reform of the reforms.

“Whilst accepting changes may be needed to the police pay and conditions I have genuine fears that performance related pay is not the best way forward to deliver an effective and locally accountable service. Pay that is based on performance places the emphasis on quantity, at the expense of the quality of policing provided, which may mean officers will start to focus purely on those aspects they are judged upon, such as their number of monthly arrests. This may also have a detrimental effect on the resilience and flexibility the service currently provides.

“When Mr Cameron says it is absurd that chief officers tell him an underperforming police officer is almost unsackable, I agree. Absurd that chief officers are saying that when they have the regulations and powers available to them to dismiss officers who are grossly incompetent, but they choose not to use them. We look forward to working with Mr Cameron and his team to ensure the views of 140,000 police officers in England and Wales are heard, not just several modernising chief officers. Only through open consultation with all rank and staff associations’, together with involvement from the public, can we ensure we get the police service we all want.”

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