29 September 2022
It is only right that I begin this month’s message by paying tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Everyone at Derbyshire Police Federation was deeply saddened by the Queen’s death and as servants of the Crown we sent our deepest condolences to the Royal Family on behalf of our members.
She was a much-loved and well-respected monarch and today’s police officers have only ever known service under her long and distinguished reign.
We swear allegiance to the Crown when we take our oath and that is, and always has been, a hugely significant part in the process of becoming a police officer.
Police officers from across England and Wales supported the Metropolitan Police in the build-up to the funeral service and on the actual day of the ceremonies and have received widespread praise for the way in which they policed the event and engaged with the public.
One of the Queen’s last duties was to accept Boris Johnson’s resignation and invite Liz Truss to form a Government as the country’s new Prime Minister.
No sooner had she taken office then the nation went into mourning so in a sense the new administration is still in its early days.
But we are nevertheless keen to make sure Ms Truss and her new Home Secretary Suella Braverman are left in no doubt about our position.
The Police Federation has written to both to highlight our concerns over pay and working conditions and the fact that this year’s pay rise has still left many of our members struggling to pay the bills.
Some police officers are using food vouchers to feed their families and across the country one in seven is struggling to cover monthly essentials.
And I would imagine this year’s pay and morale survey, which is open to members until 3 October, will provide all the evidence that is needed of the hardships that some of our members continue to face.
Ms Truss and Ms Braverman must work with the Police Federation to guarantee a fair and proportionate pay rise for officers next year. We can’t carry on like this. Enough is enough.
The physical and mental wellbeing of our members is our top priority so it is worth sending out a reminder that we are always there for anyone who might be struggling.
We know these are tough times and we will do everything we can to make sure help, support and advice is available to any members who need it.
I’ll end as usual by wishing you all well and urging you to stay safe, keep looking out for each other and give us a shout whenever you need our help.