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Superintendents: Government is devaluing policing and its officers

Commenting on the 2018/19 pay award for police officers announced by the government today, PSA National Secretary Dan Murphy said:

“A look beyond the headlines of both this year’s and last year’s pay announcements makes it clear that the government is not treating officers fairly. 

“What is also clear is that the government does not understand the importance the police service places on the recommendations of the independent review body for pay. 

“Police officers do not have the same industrial rights as other professions, so they trust and expect that their pay will be set in a fair way. The independent review body takes into account affordability to the public purse and seeks all stakeholders positions when making its recommendations. 

“As the government has now not followed these recommendations for the last two years, officers would be entitled to question whether the mechanisms in place to set their pay are fit for purpose. 

“It also calls into question why the government has insisted on this process if it is simply going to make its own decisions on pay. It has created a system that reduces Chief Constables’ budgets, then asks them what they can afford to pay their staff. This allows the government to set consistently below-inflation pay rises. 

“The Association argues this does not value or pay police officers fairly. The consistent devaluing and underfunding of policing is only going to result in a worsening service to the public in the long-term.” 


For the 2017/18 pay award the staff associations requested a pay rise of 2.8%.  The employer (NPCC) requested 1 % non-consolidated . The independent review body recommended 2%.The government awarded 1% and a 1% single year non-consolidated bonus.

At the time (September 2017) National Secretary Dan Murphy said:

“Whilst we are pleased to see an increase, this pay award falls far short of what we believe officers deserve.

“Essentially, officers will feel their pay cap remains, because half of what they have been awarded will be taken away within a year.

“Together with the Police Federation, we put forward a solid, evidence-based case for a modest increase in pay of 2.8% – less than the current inflation rate announced today.

“This is after several years of significant pay restraint, meaning that our members have suffered a drop in pay of almost 18% in real terms since 2010.

“Our members, together with those they lead in the service, work tirelessly every day to protect the public. Officers frequently put themselves in harm’s way to keep people safe.

“It is vital that the police are fairly rewarded for the risks they take and the levels of responsibility they carry on behalf of the public.

“By awarding a 1% rise, and a one-off, non-pensionable bonus of 1% based on last year’s pay, the government is showing that it has not listened to the service.

“We need to consider the detail of the Police Remuneration Review Body report and understand why the government has not followed its recommendations in full.

“All public sector workers need to be valued and paid fairly.”

For the 2018/19 pay award the staff associations requested a pay rise of 3.4%.  The employer (NPCC) requested 1% consolidated.

The independent review board recommended 2% plus the consolidation of 2018/19 1% bonus

The Government awarded 2%.

The cumulative effect of the pay announcements over the two years means that in 2018/19 officers will actually be financially worse off and this year’s pay award is worth only an 0.85% increase in real terms.