money in hand

Proposals which would see ‘major reform’ in how police officers are paid will be divisive and could lead to recruitment issues, Staffordshire Police Federation has warned.

The College of Policing led plans outline changes in police officer pay, work patterns, recruitment and deployment.

It says the performance related pay proposal could be brought in as ‘quid pro quo’ for extra funding from the Treasury.

But the idea has received short shrift from Staffordshire Police Federation Chairman Keith Jervis.

“I’m absolutely against it and I think it’s divisive,” he said.

“The whole idea behind performance related pay, paying some police officers more than others, and certainly regionalised pay, creates an environment where you could have one force that pays firearms officers, for example, more than another force and so the first force then struggles to recruit.

“The system that we’ve had for so many years now has worked really well. That’s acknowledged by the College of Policing and in fact Mike Cunningham, the Head of the College of Policing, has said it’s worked so well for so many years, why would we need to change it?

“What we do want to encourage is for policing to be a career for people, not just to come, get some performance related pay over a specific role and then leave us. We want them to stay,” he said.

The emphasis should be placed on securing more funds for the service, rather than tinkering with police pay, he added.

“In Staffordshire we are down from 2,400 officers to 1,600 so it’s about putting more money into policing.

“We’ve explored many ways of working to try and deal with demand, and we can’t.

“We just haven’t got sufficient staff to deal with it.

“Performance related pay then makes it about performance tables, about how many arrests you could have or how many intelligence logs you could put in. It just doesn’t work. That’s not what policing’s about, for me,” he said.

“It’s about encouraging people to come into policing, gain experience and stay in policing because the more experience you get the better police officer you get.

“If you’ve got a specialism perhaps in cybercrime, we don’t want you to come, work for the police for a little bit and then leave. We want you to do a good job for your length of service, ideally 30 years plus.”