Police Reform Talks End In 'Anger And Disappointment' For Officers
Negotiations over police cuts between officials and police staff ended in failure on Tuesday, with officers claiming that government reforms were being made on 'ideological' grounds.
The failure to agree comes after a recent report said 34,000 jobs in the police would be lost through budget cuts of up to 20 per cent.
The talks were held through the Police Negotiating Board, an independently-chaired body through which government officials, police authorities and chief officers negotiate with police staff.
An attempt to find agreement on the recommendations for £387 million of savings made in the Winsor report in March, the talks have now ended in failure, police staff said.
Police staff said they were united with chief officers and superintendents, and called on the home secretary to honour the ruling of the Police Arbitration Tribunal which will follow in the autumn after both sides give evidence.
The PAT's recommendation is not binding on the home secretary, but has the same status as a recommendation by both sides of the PNB.
The Police Federation of England and Wales, who represent rank and file officers and took part in the talks, said in a statement that counter proposals by staff, which included suspending bonuses for superintendents and chief officers and reducing the rate of casual overtime, had been rejected.
Paul McKeever Chairman of PolFed, said: “It is extremely frustrating and disappointing that we have been unable to reach agreement today. Staff Side fully engaged in the negotiations from the outset despite the extremely challenging timescales."
"We worked hard to find alternative reforms that make similar financial savings within the police service but unfortunately these alternatives were rejected by the Official Side. Today, they have made clear that despite government rhetoric, this is about dogma and not a solution to the fiscal situation the country faces."
“We now ask that the Home Secretary, Theresa May, keeps the promise she made last year to the police officers of England and Wales to fight our corner and that the government honour the negotiation process and the decision of the independent Police Arbitration Tribunal."
McKeever later tweeted that the police had its 'heads up' after the failure.