Home Secretary, Right Honourable Priti Patel MP, is to be challenged to ‘care and value’ the Police Service, healing the relationship between the government and police, by one of the Service’s most senior leaders.
Chief Superintendent Paul Griffiths, President of the Police Superintendents’ Association (PSA) will pose the challenge to the Home Secretary as part of his President’s Address on day 1 of the Association’s annual conference beginning today, Monday 9th September in Stratford-Upon-Avon.
Paul will detail the ‘human cost of the funding cuts’, explaining:
“The cost of running the service has been shifting from the organisation to the individual and this is not acceptable or fair.”
Superintending ranks have been cut by more than any other across the service, losing 25% since 2010. Latest PSA statistics reveal that despite this, three quarters of members surveyed had experienced an increased workload in the last 12 months, with the average Superintendent working 53 hours per week – almost 50% more than the UK average.*
Paul will call on the Home Secretary to include the Superintending ranks in the plan to increase officer numbers by 20,000. He will say:
“The recognition of the necessity to include our rank in this major resourcing plan is crucial. We have to come together as a service, with realistic, tangible solutions for making the absolute most of this generational opportunity.
“Whilst the public would be forgiven for believing that all the additional officers will be ‘walking their local beats’, we should be honest and strategic about how we rebuild our fine Service.”
Despite representing almost 1300 of the Police Service’s senior operational leaders, the PSA has not been invited to sit on the Government’s newly formed Policing Board. Paul will question this decision and urge the Home Secretary to “take the workforce with you on this journey of police reform”, involving officers in the resourcing drive, which he describes as on a scale ‘never seen before’.
On Officer safety, he will say that “Officers are constantly abused, harassed, assaulted and attacked in increasing numbers………suffering as victims of their own dedication. These are the people we need to support, and we owe them the promise of a commitment to change, support and value.”
Following the recent death of PC Andrew Harper, Paul will also seek a major change to one of the country’s revered commemorative awards – asking for an extension to the use of the Elizabeth Cross to cover families of police officers killed in the line of their duty.
Other speakers at the conference include Chief HMICFRS, Sir Thomas Winsor, College of Policing Chief Executive, CC Mike Cunningham QPM, Chair of the NPCC, Martin Hewitt QPM, Chair of the APCC, Katy Bourne OBE, Victims’ Commissioner, Dame Vera Baird QC , Shadow Policing Minister Louise Haigh MP, Chair of The Police Foundation, Sir Bill Jeffrey, Director of the Police Foundation Dr Rick Muir and Founder and Chairman of Delivery Associates, Sir Michael Barber.