28 days from today is Mon, 14 October 2019

Hampshire Police Federation

Mays chair message

13 May 2019

It has been a busy couple of months following the recent cyber attacks suffered by the national Police Federation, and the second attack which took our local systems offline.

Thank you to everyone for your patience whilst we are replacing computers and getting everything working properly. My special thanks go to Lizzie Coady and Phil Callard who support all our officers from the office and have managed to work around the IT issues to provide you all with the advice and support that members rely on each day. Working with the support of the force, we have managed to contact all members and retired members to make them aware of the cyber attack and to offer guidance and support.

I was the PSU Commander for the recent Saints v Liverpool match and I got to speak directly with officers about some of their concerns, mainly about numbers of officers on team; many of these are echoed in the recent Demand and Capacity Survey. I even managed to get my hands on a prisoner who assaulted one of my officers!

In this past month, a recent report has evidenced what we probably all felt - that Hampshire Police is underfunded by the government.

https://www.justiceinspectorates.gov.uk/hmicfrs/our-work/article/value-for-money-inspections/value-for-money-profiles/)

The report shows that the force receives £47.7 million less than the average force and 64% of the force budget comes from Central Government.

I have written to all Hampshire MPs sharing the survey, inviting them to meet with the federation and to come out on patrol with local officers to see first-hand the challenges they face. My hope is that this encourages them to address the funding inequality that Hampshire faces – the stark reality of which means less cops on your team.

Several of them have already replied and we are booking them into ride alongs, so you may get the opportunity to provide your views direct to your local MP very soon.

Following the great news that the PCC has invested nearly £1.5 million over the next three years, the federation been working hard with Hampshire’s Occupational Health team to look at how this money can best be spent to support our most seriously injured and unwell officers. We are also looking at how officers and managers can get the best from the OH team by understanding each other’s roles.    

Although its timeline may have changed, Brexit is never out of the news. We have been working hard negotiating and influencing decisions around staffing and leave restrictions, working with RMT to get the best deal for officers. I know some feel that Brexit is not an exigency of duty, because we have known that it will happening for two years. The trouble is that no one knew (and still don’t know) the final date or the implications and it has been constantly moving, so we sought to influence the Gold Commander to make as limited changes as possible.

The underlying principle being where major public events are foreseeable in advance it is reasonable that officers have their duties planned with a decent amount of notice. We meet regularly with RMT to ensure that this is the case, it is neither good resource management nor conducive to officers work/life balance to be notified of duties for such foreseeable events close to it happening.

The term ‘exigencies of duty’ should be interpreted as relating to situations where a pressing demand, need or requirement is perceived that is not reasonably avoidable and necessitates a change of roster.

In other ongoing work, the federation was approached by several officers from Winchester who had been assaulted and did not feel that the sentence was appropriate based upon the new Assaults Upon Emergency Service Workers legislation.

We raised with the chief who pledged to speak with local judges. We managed to get coverage on local radio and television news, plus regional newspapers. We are keen for you to contact the office where you think you have been let down so that we can lobby for effective use of the legislation that the federation worked so hard to have enshrined into law.

You will have now heard about the D Day commemorative events that are planned for the summer and that, amongst others, Donald Trump will be attending and this will have an impact on the numbers officers delivering the policing operation. We are heavily involved in supporting operational planning to make sure that welfare and support is in place for all attending officers.

As ever, if there is something you think we should be doing that you don’t think we are, please get in touch.

Regards,

 

Alex