Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Today: Police march and rally in London for fair pay.

The Police Federation are taking part in a march and a rally today. An estimated 15,000 officers are thought to be taking part in a one hour march from Park Lane to the Home office where petitions will be handed in by one representative from every force in England and Wales. I wish them good luck and hope that the media give this rally the publicity it deserves. If Jacqui Smith was hoping this was going die down, then I think she is very mistaken.

The news that police support staff and PCSOs have accepted a 2.5% pay deal will no doubt further infuriate front line police officers. The reason police staff and PCSOs got a better pay deal than police officers? - Their pay was negotiated by the union Unison. It seems clear that if you have the ability to strike, you stand a better chance of fair pay. No wonder the police federation are balloting members on the ability to take industrial action:

From the Police federeation website:

Why is the Police Federation voting on whether officers want the right to strike? It is illegal for police officers to take any form of industrial action. For nearly a century that is what has set officers apart from all other workers in the public sector. Many officers have said if the government wish to treat us like all other workers, then perhaps we should have the same employment rights. It was therefore decided that the Police Federation will hold a ballot of the 140,000 members to ask the question –'In the absence of binding arbitration, do you want the Police Federation to lobby for full industrial rights for police officers?’. It is intended that the ballot will take place at the end of February.
I've said many times before that this government have been in power far too long and they now believe that they can do anything they please. I hope the police federation are just the first group to show Gordon Brown and his government that they cannot ride rough shod over the people.

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