Monday, 19 May 2008

Police v The Home Secretary

The Police Federation Conference starts in Bournemouth tomorrow and Wednesday morning will see the keynote speeches by the Federation's chair Jan Berry and the Home Secretary Jacqui Smith and this after Jacqui Smith renages on the decision of the Police Arbitration Tribunal decision to pay officers 2.5% backdated to 1st September 2007. It will be interesting to see how Conference reacts, will they give Smith the silent treatment or will they heckle her or even walk out... I doubt if they will jostle her as they did Roy Jenkins when he was Home Secretary in the late 1970's. You can be sure though that she won't receive a warm welcome not after the demonstration by 25,000 Police officers through London. We also await the result of the ballot for the right to strike and the result of the Judicial Review against Smith's decision in the High Court.

Closer to home the six Local Authorities in North Wales will need to make a decision as to who the 9 members of the North Wales Police Authority will be, the 9 need to be politically balanced and as a result of Labour losses across the region we could well see some long standing Labour Councillors fail to be returned to the authority. Could one casualty be Cllr Malcom King, Ex Chair of the Authority?

From a personal perspective and having served as a Police Officer in North Wales for over 30 years I have little time for the Police Authority, I just see them as weak and ineffectual and constantly failing to exercise control over the Chief Constable. To make the Police Authority more accountable we need to have them elected and not appointed.

4 comments:

Plaid Gwersyllt said...

83% of Police Officers polled want to negotiate the right to strike. Can't really see this happening especially after this government has withdrawn the Prison Officers Association's right to strike.

Dba said...

i allways thought,that striking was a way of showing solidarity.and in the prison officers case has been withdrawn,the right to strike,was it not the labour party who fought for the rights of workers some years ago?it seems to me that the oppressed have be come the oppressor.
i feel the uk government are breaking the rules of the individual and there rights.
The police are not supposed to be political,but the government is making it hard for them not to be,any one for a sick note.

Plaid Gwersyllt said...

North Wales Police Authority are already in crisis, they have lost 2 long standing elected members, Cllr Terry Renshaw, Flintshire and Cllr Elwyn Edwards, Denbighshire. Also the three magistrates are being replaced by independent members so that means losing another experienced member John Anderson JP. I'm sure Richard Brunstrom is really looking forward to running the show with all these inexperienced members of the Authority present...but there again some of his most ardent supporters have gone as well.

Plaid Gwersyllt said...

To read Jan Berry's keynote address to Conference and Home Secretary go to:

http://www.polfed.org/Chair_Keynote_Speech_Conf_2008.pdf

Good speech!!