Monday, 5 September 2011

Police Civilianisation

Interesting report from the Policy Exchange this morning on money wasted in English police forces because police officers are undertaking administrative jobs. The report said police forces in England and Wales wasted almost £150m a year because one in 20 officers carried out roles that could be performed by civilians. That's 7000 police officers being wasted. 

Sadly, the rather silly publicity seeking recommendation on police officers travelling to work in uniforms, somewhat blunts this important message.

In Scotland the position is even worse. In terms of WTE (whole time equivalent), police staffs comprise 28% of all police personnel in Scotland. In comparison, the figure for England & Wales is 32% (excluding Police Community Support Officers). And that was before the current cuts that disproportionately hit Police Staffs. The 'holy grail' of 1000 extra police officers is being achieved by putting even more police officers into the wrong jobs.

UNISON published a report that explains this in detail and shows how an effective balance of Police Officers and Staffs is the best way forward for Scottish policing. Today's report is an important wake up call for the Scottish Government.

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