A R C H I V E S                  page 7 of 12

Stop massacre of pensions now!
PCSOs throughout England Wales could see their pension conditions radically changed unless the government is persuaded to change it's mind

At a meeting on 22 September, local government employers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland came out with initial proposals dealing only with short-term changes designed to recoup the cost of revocation of the ’85 Rule’, and not the future shape of the scheme as unions had been expecting. They also failed to provide information to back up negotiations requested by the unions since June.

They also want negotiations to be concluded by mid-October.

"The employers have not listened to the views of our members in the LGPS. Once again they are clearly trying to get more for less out of them and deny us the right to real negotiation as we were promised in April," said Prentis. “This is a slap in the face for hard-working local government and other public sector workers, already under pressure.”

UNISON head of local government Heather Wakefield, who leads the trade union side in negotiations, added:

"The unions are unanimous that not only have employers opened negotiations with outrageous proposals, but that they are attempting to impose an impossible timetable on them.

"UNISON and the other unions involved have made it clear that we expect the same negotiating timetable for the Local Government Pension Scheme in England, Wales and Northern Ireland as that being proposed by trade and industry secretary Alan Johnson for other public service schemes. We are all rightly pledged to fully consulting and balloting our members on any proposed changes to their pensions. This timetable would give us no chance.

"We expect local government members to be treated equally with the members of those other schemes. They are sick to death of being the poor relations of the public sector. Any principles agreed for reform of other public sector pensions agreed in the Public Services Forum should also be applied to the LGPS," she added.

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Glyn Boyington (UNISON) :

Many if not most of you will be in your employer’s pension scheme.

In most cases this is the Local Government Pension Scheme.

You will be aware that the Government is attempting to change (for the worse) all public sector pensions-health service, civil service etc.

Following the threat of strike action by Local Government, Health Service & Civil Service workers prior to the general election the Government agreed to revert to the existing arrangements and enter talks on the shape of the schemes for the future.

On 22 SEP Local Government Employers and that includes police forces outside the Met put their proposals.

You can read Unison’s view at www.unison.org.uk . Check out the news section for the press release or the police staff section for a fuller report.

    The basic offer is

  • Work longer

  • Pay more

  • Get fewer benefits.

If you are a member of the LGPS or the civil service scheme you need to keep yourself up to date and you union people advised of your thoughts.Pensions are deferred pay not just a perk.
23 9 05 Glyn Boyington

falkor says: let's wind back to earlier this year courtesy of Matthew Elliot

    Fri 25 Feb 2005 :MATTHEW ELLIOT

    This week, members of the Westminster parliament awarded themselves an inflation-busting pay rise of 2.8 per cent, increasing their salary by £1,610 to £58,095 a year. And, while politicians are constantly pledging to cut "government waste" and urging wage restraint, they have increased their expenses, pay and staff allowances by more than 50 per cent in the past five years.

so MPs gave themselves a lovely 2.8 per cent rise to a standard salary of £58000 a year and HEY!! their pension is NOT in danger of being downgraded either - they're sitting pretty and deciding on YOUR pension? I think all PCSOs should check out GlynB's advice pretty strongly viz: Write to your MP, get active in your trade union MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD

An MP earning £58,095 would receive a retirement income (pension) of £29,048 a year after 20 years’ service.

what will YOU GET? do you know?
27 9 05

Clarke's Dixon of Dock Green-style policing
Sep 28 2005          Daily Post

EVERY North Wales home will get the name, phone number and e-mail address of their local bobby.

Home secretary charles Clarke wants people across the UK to be given 24-hour access to their community police officers.

He wants officers to be "personally responsible" for protecting individual families in a return to Dixon of Dock Green-style policing.
Mr Clarke said the proposals would form a central plank of controversial plans to shake-up the structure of policing.

He is promoting the spread of community policing while urging constabularies to merge into large "strategic forces". He said by 2008, every community - one or two council wards - will have its own dedicated unit of beat bobbies and community support officers.

He told delegates at the Labour Party conference in Brighton: "I am determined by 2008 that every household in the country will know the names, phone numbers and e-mail addresses of the community police officers who are directly and personally responsible for their household.

"When a crime does occur people want to feel the offender will be caught, that justice will be done and carried out effectively, fairly and hopefully swiftly."

Mr Clarke also defended plans for a widescale merging of police forces.

Antisocial behaviour:
Home Office wants more power for support officers
By Tom Lloyd - 07/09/05
Powers to break up groups of young people could be given to all community support officers (CSOs) in England and Wales, under plans to standardise the system.

The Home Office wants all CSOs to have the same powers, and has issued a consultation document asking for views on which powers they should get.

Chief constables currently choose the level of authority CSOs in their area have. Options include powers to confiscate alcohol or tobacco from under-18s, to take the name and address of young people behaving "in an antisocial manner" and to disperse groups of young people under the age of 16 after 9pm.

The latter is in Section 30 of the Antisocial Behaviour Act 2003. Part of this has been successfully challenged in the High Court. Charles Clarke, the Home Secretary, said standard powers "will help the public understand exactly what CSOs can do, and allow them to handle more issues, freeing up police time to deal with serious offences".

But Gareth Crossman, director of policy at human rights pressure group Liberty, said: "The role of policing is one for professionals who are properly trained and accountable." He said CSOs were there to support the police, but were being given too many powers.

The Association of Chief Police Officers said there is a need for standard powers for CSOs, but some situations should be dealt with only by police.

These include "where there is a likelihood that police action will include any infringement of a person's human rights".

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Press Release SEP 05 :Police Federation
Fewer police officers in London
Police officer numbers in London are to be cut and the process of reducing them has now begun.

Increasingly, officers are to be replaced with uniformed and plain clothed civilians who will be given limited training and powers.

Over recent months, the Metropolitan Police Federation has repeatedly sought assurances from the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) that two management projects, called 'Force Modernisation' and 'Service Review', will not leave London with fewer police officers than it currently has.

The MPS has felt unable to give any such assurances.

Most recently, the Federation publicly challenged the MPS – in the pages of the police officers' professional journal, Police Review – to guarantee that police officer strength in the capital would be maintained. Again, the MPS demurred. The inescapable conclusion of this is that significant reductions in officer numbers are to be made.

The Federation has published a briefing paper on the background to the cuts and their implications for London's residents and business community. To read the paper, click here.

The first police officer posts to go are in the London Borough of Bexley where, under the 'Force Modernisation' project, there has been heavy civilianisation of core policing activities.

A large Home Office special grant was given to the borough police to ensure it could avoid public alarm by maintaining police officer strength as well as the new civilians it was bringing in.

Now the money has run out, leaving the MPS unable to fund its existing number of police officers as well as the new civilians. It has been decided, therefore, to reduce police officer strength, with 23 police posts being scrapped.

It is intended to extend the Bexley model of policing throughout London in accordance with Home Office wishes.

Similar experiments are being carried out in other forces, so we can only assume that the ultimate intention is to apply the 'Bexley model' – with all its implications – to the rest of England and Wales.

We hope that the Home Office and Police Service are not planning to use the upheaval which will be inevitable if the proposed merger of police forces goes ahead to mask a nationwide reduction in police officer strength.

The 'Service Review' project was explained by MPS management as a bid to identify and rectify inefficiencies in the force and use the resulting cash savings to boost front-line policing.

The Metropolitan Police Federation thinks this is an admirable idea and lends its full assistance and support to the project. With two provisos.

The first is that the savings which are identified are genuinely redistributed within the Service and not used simply to facilitate budget cuts.

The second is that money is spent on what Londoners want – policing by police officers, not civilians.                   Press Release SEP 05 :Police Federation

Cards promote community bobbies
Collectible cards are to be handed out to children in the street, Somerset, to help make community police officers more approachable.

Each card contains a photograph and contact details of an officer as well as a general safety message. It is hoped youngsters will approach an officer directly if they have concerns about anything.

If the pilot scheme is successful, it will be expanded to other parts of the Somerset area.

Police Community Support Officer Kristy Blackwell said: "The programme hopes to persuade children to become more safety aware but also to feel like they can approach an officer if ever they are in trouble."

Pc Roy Strong added: "We are always around in Street and it would be great if the children approach us and ask for a card for their collection."

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PCSOs demand power to do job
(9/9/05)            Community support officers, who played a vital role during and after the London terrorist attacks, must be treated more professionally, said UNISON today.

Top of their most wanted list is a consistent set of powers for police community support officers (PCSOs) across England and Wales. The current situation, where support officers have been granted different sets of powers, confuses the public and officers said the union.

UNISON is also calling for a full review of personal protective equipment, including items such as knife-proof vests for support officers.

"PCSOs played a vital role in all the major cities and towns in the UK during the terrorist attacks," said UNISON national officer Ben Priestley." They were patrolling train stations and streets, being a visible police presence and providing public reassurance.

“They were praised for their dedication to duty. But our members feel they still need to be treated as professionals and have the proper tools to do the job.

“The first step is having a national set of powers, so they can deliver what is expected. The ad-hoc approach of giving powers throughout the country is causing confusion in the service and for the public about what a PCSO can do,” warned Priestly

“Our members also need to feel that they are protected while out on patrols and have called for a review of protective equipment. We would never dream of sending a paramedic, police officer or firefighter out without the proper equipment, so why should a PCSO be any different?” he asked.

“With all this comes a need for better training in the law and personal safety. We will be discussing these issues with the Home Office and the national training provider, Centrex,” he added.

UNISON is also pushing for a national set of terms and condition for PCSOs, calling the service a ‘dinosaur’ when it comes to employment rights for police staff.

“We still have the unacceptable situation of each force having different rates of pay for PCSOs. Some forces pay their PCSOs £3,000 less than their neighbours. We will be putting in a claim for a national rate of pay for a national role,” said Priestly.

single patrolling in 2047 had certainly got no easier
John Child cartoons!

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Dispersal order for Acton Park
By Rachel SixsmithActon area affected by order
ACTON is the latest area in the Ealing borough to be issued with a dispersal order.

Ealing police and Ealing Council jointly agreed on the order. They said that because people have been intimidated, harassed, or distressed as a result of the presence or behaviour of two or more people in the Acton Park area, and because anti-social behaviour is a significant problem, a dispersal order is necessary.

The order means that both uniformed police and Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) will have the right to disperse groups acting inappropriately at any time of the day.

Detective Superintendent Chris Foster, of Ealing police, said: "We believe the introduction of the dispersal order in this area will help achieve a sustained reduction of crime and disorder in the area and will send a clear message to those involved in anti-social behaviour that it will not be tolerated."

He added: "It will also ensure that Acton Park and the surrounding streets remains a safe environment for those residents and members of the public, who live near, work and visit the park now and in the future.

"Any individuals, irrespective of their age, seen to be acting in an antisocial manner will be dealt with appropriately." The area covered by the dispersal order includes Acton Park, East Churchfield Road, East Acton Lane and The Vale (see map left) and will come into effect on September 5, lasting until March 4 next year. Natalie Pace, Ealing Council's antisocial behaviour co-ordinator, said: "The safety of residents is the council's utmost priority and they should be able to enjoy Acton Park without feeling intimidated or harassed.

"The council simply will not tolerate people's quality of life being affected by antisocial behaviour.

"We will continue to work side by side with the police and do everything we can to tackle this issue. "

The Ealing Broadway area was issued with a similar dispersal order tackling anti-social behavior in July this year. If you wish to report antisocial behaviour in the Acton Park Dispersal Area you can do so by contacting the East Acton Safer Neighbourhoods Team on 020 8721 2708 or Ealing police on 020 8246 1212 or Ealing Borough Council on 020 8825 5000.

Alternatively please contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111

11:14am Thursday 1st September 2005


All in a day's work:
How to find the best candidates for PCSOs

By Mike McGrath (FRIDAY JUNE 10th 2005: THE JOB)
A NEW challenging selection process for community support officers (PCSOs) is ensuring the Met employs the best candidates for its extended family.

The latest group of 24 potential PCSOs undertook three tests at Hendon - a written test, interviews and a role-play of a situation they could face as a PCSO - to test their competency to join.

The Selection Centre at Hendon handles testing for all PCSO applicants. There are two to three testing slots every two months. Selection Centre Manager, HR Recruitment, William Jordan said: “We’ve reinforced the process so the best standard of PCSO will be selected. When PCSOs were introduced, the Met was the first force to have them – they were a brand new concept.

“Developing a process to select and train them was a new challenge for the Service. We have learned from our experience and now, two years down the line, we are strengthening what is an evolving process.”

Applicants watched video footage of a crime being committed before writing a crime report to prove their written and expressive abilities. During the interview stage, they were asked questions based around necessary competencies required as a member of the police family. Potential recruits also took part in two interactive exercises in which they took on the role of a PCSO dealing with a member of the public experiencing a crime problem. This tested problem-solving and communication skills and their ability to see both sides of a situation.

Applicant Sandra Romang, 36, decided that after 12 years of working as a secretary becoming a PCSO would allow her to work with the people in her area to make a difference to the community. She said: “I found the selection process challenging but fair. I felt I was being judged on my merits as a potential PCSO. The examiners put me at ease and allowed me to demonstrate my abilities.”

Above article courtesy of THE JOB.

Find more articles from THE JOB at www.met.police.uk/job/

John Child from London graduated from KIAD Rochester in 2001 now working as a graphic designer
John Child cartoons!

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We will back our bobbies
By Glenn Ebrey           9:56am Wednesday 8th June 2005

A RESIDENTS' champion has leapt to the defence of neighbourhood bobbies, after a former colleague accused them of "incompetence and dishonesty".

Former Thamesmead Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Alan Hillsden has revealed how he saw bent cops skive off work and steal money and drugs.

But Abbey Wood Residents' Forum chairman Joy Cunningham MBE hit back at the claims, saying PCSOs in the area do a "cracking job".

Mr Hillsden, who patrolled Thamesmead for eight months, told the Daily Mirror on Monday he had never seen "such a culture of laziness, disinterest, incompetence and dishonesty".

He says he saw police officers stealing money and cannabis during drug raids. He even accused his ex-colleagues of walking the streets for less than a quarter of their shift and spending the rest of the time in cafes and police canteens.

However the residents' forum says its experiences with the PCSOs, community based officers without the full power of arrest introduced in September 2002, has been positive.

Mrs Cunningham, of Sewell Road, claims they play a vital role and are popular with most members of the community. She said: "I think the officers have done bloody well for us. I was surprised when I read this in the paper.

"They get on well with people and we have an excellent relationship with them.
"They come to our meetings every other week and if we have any problems in the community they listen and take them back to their bosses."

Daily Mirror pictures showed two officers coming out of the C2K Youth and Community Centre, in Penmon Road, having apparently spent an hour and a half inside.

But Mrs Cunningham, 69, who works at the centre two days a week, says she has never seen officers spend that amount of time there. She added: "The officers are visible in the community but they have to cover a large area. They do a cracking job and we are glad to have them."

Senior Met Police officers are now set to launch an investigation into Mr Hillsden's allegations. Deputy Assistant Commissioner Brian Paddick said: "The Metropolitan Police Service takes any allegation of corrupt practice by either police officers or PCSO's extremely seriously.
"We will be thoroughly investigating all the allegations made in the article, led by our Directorate of Professional Standards."

9:56am Wednesday 8th June 2005

Police await Livingstone's say on free travel
LONDON Mayor Ken Livingstone is still to decide on an Epping Forest Council request to allow uniformed police community support officers free travel on the London Underground in the Epping Forest district.

Council leader John Knapman raised the issue with Tube chiefs after the council agreed it was prepared to contribute £90,000 towards the cost of six additional community support officers, but he had concerns that their use might be restricted if they could not use the Tube to get between Epping and Loughton.

London Underground said the matter could only be decided by Mr Livingstone who, in a letter to the council, has said he will make a decision within two months. Mr Knapman said: "Certainly the letter was positive and I'm very hopeful that we will get away with paying around 7p (to cover the costs) for an annual pass instead of £700.

"It would appear that the mayor has accepted that the marginal cost of allowing police community support officers free travel is negligible and that the benefit of their presence can significantly benefit London Underground."

2:33pm Friday 25th March 2005 ........... EPPING FOREST GUARDIAN

ICE campaign joins up with Teach 2 Text
Weston Mercury           5th August 2005

Teenagers across North Somerset are being encouraged to put emergency numbers into their mobile phones as part of the Teach 2 Text campaign.

Youngsters are being advised to sign up to the ICE - In Case Of Emergency - campaign, which is being run throughout the country.

The campaign was launched earlier this year by East Anglian Ambulance Service and is supported by Falklands war hero Simon Weston and communications giant Vodafone.

The idea is that you store the word ICE in your mobile phone address book and against it enter the number of the person you want contacted 'In Case of an Emergency.' In an emergency situation, fire, police or hospital services will be able to quickly find out who the person's next of kin is and be able to contact them.

The idea follows research carried out by Vodaphone, which showed 75 per cent of people carry no details on who they would like contacted following an incident.

Police community support officers have been encouraging youngsters to use the ICE idea during special Teach 2 Text assemblies being run at all North Somerset secondary schools.

Police community support officer Claire Sketchley said: "This is an excellent idea and ties in well with our Teach 2 Text campaign. "There are times, unfortunately, during the summer holidays when incidents do happen.

"These days, most young people have mobiles and by putting an ICE number into their phones, it helps the emergency services contact a relative quickly if an incident takes place.
"The children have really taken this on board and are encouraging one another to put in an ICE number."

As part of the ICE campaign, people are also being advised to carry a hard copy of details of who to contact in an emergency and these numbers can be written on the Teach 2 Text cards which have been distributed to youngsters all over the district.

Mersey police force to rocket in size to 9,000
Sep 28 2005           EXCLUSIVE by Deborah James Daily Post Staff
MERSEYSIDE Police is to undergo a major expansion that will see the force grow to more than 9,000 officers and staff.

Chief Constable Bernard Hogan-Howe wants to recruit 2,330 civilians under a new drive to free up uniformed officers' time.

Speaking a year since he started the job, he set out plans to recruit a 1,500-strong cohort of non-uniformed volunteers over the next five years.

They will perform a range of tasks from answering phones and staffing police station receptions, to helping with accounts and speed camera patrols.

The Government has already pledged funding to pay for an increase in the number of paid Community Support Officers (CSOs) from 170 to 700, by 2008.

Mr Hogan-Howe also wants to more than double the number of part-time Specials, who are currently unpaid but do wear a uniform, from around 200 to 500 by 2010.

The force currently has a total of 4,339 uniformed officers, and around 2,000 office-based support staff.

Around 100 unpaid non-uniformed volunteers have already been piloted in Wirral.jump to next page

Mr Hogan-Howe now wants to increase that number 15-fold, by placing 250 volunteers in each of the forces six Basic Command Unit areas.

He said: "We are simply not going to get enough money to recruit enough officers to do all the jobs we need doing, given the increased pressures of modern policing.

"We have to work with the money that is available, and one way is to give the community the opportunity to help in the fight against crime."

He added: "In 2001, we had 400 Specials, but over time that has been whittled away to 200. I would like to see that number built up again.

"It will take some time, probably five years, because there will be recruitment and training issues, but the target will be to see the police family increased to 9,000."

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