Police staff balloted over action


Published: Thursday 16th October 2014 by The News Editor

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Police staff in England and Wales, including community support officers and fingerprint officers, are to be balloted for industrial action in protest at a 1% pay offer.

Unions representing civilian staff said they were angry that after a two-year pay freeze they were being subjected to the same restrictions as other public sector workers.

NHS staff, including midwives and nurses, went on strike on Monday over pay and civil servants took action yesterday in a long-running dispute with the Government over pay and job cuts.

Unions have asked for a 3% pay rise for police staff as well as a 3% increase in allowances.

In an informal ballot in the summer, the staff overwhelmingly rejected the 1% offer.

Industrial action could be taken before Christmas if there is a yes vote.

Unison general secretary Dave Prentis said: “Unison police staff members are angry after a two-year pay freeze, followed by a miserly 1% increase last year. We are urging the employers to come back to the table and negotiate a fair pay deal.

“As the Government’s savage cuts to policing continue to bite, police staff are being asked to do more and more as colleagues are made redundant. In a survey of our police staff members carried out in the summer, 40% said that they are now struggling to pay the bills. This is no way to treat the staff who keep our communities safe.”

Unite national officer Fiona Farmer said: “Police staff have faced years of below-inflation pay increases and at the same time extensive cuts to their numbers in forces across England and Wales. Staff are angry and feel undervalued by a Government that clearly does not recognise and reward these key public sector workers.

“Members voted overwhelmingly to reject the 1% offer and I would urge the employers to return to the negotiating table and deliver a decent pay rise.”

GMB national officer Sharon Holder said: “GMB police staff, following years of below-inflation pay cuts, have just about had enough. The offer of 1% from the Police Staff Council is viewed by them as not only derisory, but insulting, particularly as support staff roles are being replaced by officers. Jobs for elite boys and girls in blue who can no longer work on the front line to mask the actual figure of job losses in police forces.”

Police staff involved in the dispute include community support officers (PCSOs), 999 call takers and dispatchers, fingerprint experts, criminal justice unit clerks, custody and detention officers, and a wide range of operational and organisational support roles.

Published: Thursday 16th October 2014 by The News Editor

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