13 September 2018
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick has said the Government’s decision to give police officers a two per cent pay rise was ‘a punch in the nose’ given that the pay review body had recommended a three per cent increase.
Speaking at the Police Superintendents’ Association annual conference in Leicester earlier this week, Ms Dick, explained she was extremely disappointed at the decision, a move backed by Leicestershire Police Federation chair Tiff Lynch.
“It is pleasing to hear the country’s most senior police officer speak up in this way,” says Tiff, “The Police Federation has already condemned the Government for ignoring the Police Remuneration Review Body recommendation so we welcome the Met Commissioner’s comments.”
During her speech, the Commissioner said she thought the decision would affect officer morale and also have an effect on recruitment and retention.
Earlier in the day, a National Audit Office report concluded the Home Office did not know if the police system is financially sustainable.
It said the Home Office lacked a long-term plan for policing and that significant gaps remain in its understanding of demand for police services and their costs.
“The way the department chooses to distribute funding has been ineffective and detached from the changing nature of policing for too long and it cannot be sure overall funding is being directed to the right places,” the report stated.
The report – Financial sustainability of police forces in England and Wales 2018 – makes clear that the total funding to police forces, from the Government and council tax, has fallen by 19 per cent in real terms since 2010-11. Consequently, officer and support staff numbers are down 18 per cent by almost 45,000 in the same period.
John Apter, national Federation chair, responded: “This report echoes what we have been saying for some time and must serve as a wake-up call to the Government. For too long it has turned a blind eye to the crisis in policing that has occurred on its watch and is of its own making.”
He added: “The responsibility of any Government is to secure the safety of its public – for this Government to sleep walk into this very predictable crisis is shameful.”