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Could this be the end of the PCSO ??

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 9:47 am
by tonkertoy ... story.html

Police cuts are “here to stay” according to Chief Inspector of the Constabulary Sir Tom Winsor.

The head of the police watchdog said there is room for further cuts but acknowledged that the police would have to focus more on serious crime.

Sir Tom said the police need to “work smarter” as inevitably the service will be smaller as he called for more action to tackle cyber crime.

His comments contrasted with those of Scotland Yard commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, who last month warned of a threat to public safety without radical reform of the police in the face of budget cuts.

Association of Chief Police Officers president Sir Hugh Orde also claimed last month that police forces were struggling to deal with reductions in funding.

But Sir Tom said further cuts are inevitable.

He told BBC Radio 4’s The World This Weekend: “Austerity is here to stay.

“The police have already made and done it well in the main, cuts of 20% in the last four years, and they are facing cuts of a further 5% next year.

“There will inevitably be a time where they can’t take any more but let us remember that measured crime has fallen dramatically but so have the demands made on the police.

“We are heading for a smaller police service.”

Asked if there was room for further cuts, Sir Tom said: “In some respects there are further efficiencies to be obtained, that is undoubtedly the case.

“They need to work smarter because they will be working smaller.”

Sir Tom said police forces have not done enough work to analyse new demands being made on them, particular with regards to cyber crime.

He said: “Any crime that is reported to the police has to be taken seriously, however there are crimes that are more serious than others.

“Nobody would argue that shoplifting is as serious as a violent assault and therefore the police need to look for the crimes that matter most to people, that do greatest harms to communities – serious and organised crime, drugs, violent offences, the grooming and sexual exploitation of children.

“Those are things that need to be properly assessed and the police I’m afraid to say have done very little adequate work in modelling, in assessing, in measuring, in analysing the demands that are made on them on a national and regional basis.

“It means that they need to understand the kinds of crimes that people are experiencing now – cyber crime, cyber enabled crime, the sexual exploitation of children, crimes that are either enabled by the internet or indeed carried out using the internet.”

Re: Could this be the end of the PCSO ??

Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 5:47 pm
by powdermonkey
It almost beggars belief that this man thinks that further cuts are still possible considering the Chief Const. of Lincolnshire has stated that his force is close to being unable to function and how many other forces are close to that situation?

Winsor seems to be saying that police should be concentrating on serious offences at the expense of less serious ones. Leaving aside the damage that shoplifting can do to a small business, as it is less able to absorb the loss compared to larger ones, will we see shoplifting dealt with by business banning offenders (a civil matter) and thus decriminalising the offence?
One other offence Winsor mentions is child abuse. Investigating this offence is costly in terms of money, resources (technology as well as staff) and time. A major investigation such as that will have a detrimental effect on a forces other commitments due to a large amount of the force's funding being directed way from things such as NTP, road traffic etc, extraction from other departments to staff the enquiry.

So, to tonkertoy's question. I believe that the cuts will affect PCSO numbers for the next few years at least and we have already seen recruitment freezes, numbers reduced by natural wastage (lovely phrase!) but I don't think it signals the end of the role. Somehow forces still have to respond, one way or another, to all demands including the lower level stuff that PCSO's deal with. No PCSO's would mean that a force would have to deploy PC's to neighbourhood disputes, parking problems, scene guards etc. Yes, they used to do these things but they've has 12 years of getting used to PCSO's doing it and would find it hard to revert.

Re: Could this be the end of the PCSO ??

Posted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 4:40 am
by JimmyRiddle
oh my god i think ive got it!!

What the HO should do is legislate for these new types of officers callled Police Investigation Support (really G4S contracted out).

They will hvave investigatory and PACE powers to deal with things like shoplighting and also eventually the power to arrest and take to their own private cutsody suite and then court.

Of course we wouldn't allow these pesky PCSOs to deal with this stuff as they are busy doing nothing!

Seriously, is that the worst idea the Conservatives have come up woith?

Re: Could this be the end of the PCSO ??

Posted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 8:17 pm
by PI & GI
"Nobody would argue that shoplifting is as serious as a violent assault "

i would! shoplifting is sugar in comparison to a violent assault!

Re: Could this be the end of the PCSO ??

Posted: Sun Jan 11, 2015 3:23 am
by JimmyRiddle
PI & GI wrote:"Nobody would argue that shoplifting is as serious as a violent assault "
i would! shoplifting is sugar in comparison to a violent assault!
It's on two levels - the damage to the victim and the damage to society. Assaults are awful yes, but so is our pandemic problem with theiving. Wonder why it's rip off Britain? Perhaps coz the shoplifters are stealing Tescos blind and the costs have to go somewhere!

Re: Could this be the end of the PCSO ??

Posted: Tue Jan 13, 2015 6:13 pm
by Rekhmire
Another £12 million to be cut from Merseyside. Neighbourhood policing under review.

Re: Could this be the end of the PCSO ??

Posted: Fri Feb 13, 2015 10:18 pm
by Lieutenant fatman
Certainly are some huge cuts coming, can't help but wonder how they'll save all that money.

Re: Could this be the end of the PCSO??

Posted: Fri Feb 13, 2015 11:21 pm
by powdermonkey
Given that the biggest cost to any force (indeed any organisation or business) is the wages bill, I expect a reduction in PCSO numbers and a reduction in hours worked which will thus reduce the increment for unsocial hours. The force I work for pays 14% shift allowance to PCSO's who don't work past 23.00 and 20% to those that do; they work until 02.00.

The latter group do so because of the night time economy in the town centres and the challenge will be to maintain the staffing levels. The alternative is to have fewer NPT staff on duty after 23.00 with obvious risks. Currently, there are regular requests for PCSO's to volunteer for OT and work till 4 a.m. when the night clubs close. Granted, we're more of a visible deterrent although we do get hands on when necessary, but I feel that my division would struggle to put enough people in the town centre if PCSO's went home at 23.30, leaving to walk back to the nick at 22.30 hrs. We do a town centre operation every Weds, Fri & Sat and last Weds there were 4 PCSO's, 4 PC's and a Sgt. Part way through the evening there was a pursuit of a stolen car and that plus the subsequent de-camp involved a lot of other available officers, leaving a reduced number available to help if anything had happened. Take away the PCSO's and the staffing problems are obvious.

Other implications would be for scene guards and low level crime enquiries, CCTV collection etc etc.

I expect the force to look at the level of demand over a period of time and use that to justify the reduction in shift allowance. We don't work past 23.00 on any other late shift.

Re: Could this be the end of the PCSO ??

Posted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:24 pm
by Flying Warden
The government hasn't considered legalising many crimes.
By decriminalising shoplifting, assault, sexual offences, street robbery, cyber crime etc then crime will naturally fall and there will be no need for large number of police officers and staff therefore saving money. :slsa: