Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Home Secretary receives a caution

I doubt few of us would begrudge above average pay received by Britain's police force, since out of our the vast armies of public employees, these people actually do something useful. However rightly or wrongly the home Secretary Jacqui Smith, decided not to backdate a two and a half percent pay rise. For many officers this resulted in losing around a couple of hundred pounds and more for those who sit on their bottoms all day.

As someone who is equally as hardworking, probably works longer hours, in a hostile environment and without the fat pension (paid for by taxpayers) I believe that the chairman of the police federation Jan Berry has gone over the top of what is acceptable behaviour.

Now as far as I see it, I assume that the Labour government, have finally realized that public sector pay is unsustainable, many of us outside the cosy world of the greedy public servant, find it unbelievable that civil servants believe that they have some god given right to improved pay every year, whether they've earned it or not and even more remarkably with no reference to the overall economy.

Here's a quote or two from the charming Jan Berry " I am sure that you felt like reaching for a stab proof vest and perhaps slipping into an old habit it - lighting up, calming your nerves,"

" But as you've reassured us you've moved on from those past indiscretions. All recent crimes have been more for the serious fraud office than the drug squad" (is Jan Berry suggesting criminal activity by the Home Secretary)

" It was a monumental mistake, and I don't say this lightly when I say you've betrayed the police service." (surely a sense of proportion is called for here)

I'm sure the comments made by the chairman of the police federation, would not amount to police brutality but I shall certainly hide behind the sofa if this woman comes on TV again. Fortunately not all police officers are quite as forthright as I found Jan Berry, so please don't have nightmares.

BBC Video of Jan Berry I suggest you do not watch alone


  1. I will mosey over to the Irish blog "Slugger O Toole" which had a good thread, re Public Sector pension burden, about two weeks ago.

    Wait out ...

  2. Here it is Tony I think you will be interested in the sums quoted even though the thread is about the particular situation in Northern Ireland:

    Saturday, May 03, 2008
    (Slugger O Toole blog)

    Could Northern Ireland’s public sector pension liability really be this bad?
    The recently released Varney Review discussed here once again highlighted how hugely bloated Northern Ireland’s public sector is, pointing out that an incredible 28% of Northern Ireland’s workforce are in the public sector as opposed to 20% in the UK and that public spending accounts for 67% of GVA, the highest in the developed world. But one area it didn’t touch on was what sort of pension liability this entails for Northern Ireland going forward, which by my reckoning is already hitting 20 29.7 billion pounds and rising.

    Most public sector pension schemes are unfunded so the liabilities being built up today are not matched by the accumulation of funds to pay for them. The British Government Actuary’s Department (GAD) has calculated what these pension liabilities for the UK as a whole are, using estimates of life expectancy and assumptions on salary growth and discount rates. According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, the liability has been rising alarmingly over the last few years, even using the official figures:

    2006 - 725 billion
    2005 - 530
    2004 - 460
    2003 - 425
    2002 - 380
    2001 - 350
    2000 - 330
    1999 - 310
    1998 - 295

    Other estimates put the 2006 liability at as high as 1,025 billion. The huge increase is due to a variety of reasons such as the increases in life expectancy, recent public pay increases (public pensions depend on final salaries) and the jump in the number of public sector workers over the period. Under New Labour, the numbers of UK public sector workers has increased from 5.18 million in 1997 to over 5.8 million nine years later.

    And yet they have the temerity to be offended when referred to as public sector parasites !!

  3. Back to policing Thanet, one feels the money spent on plastic policemen such as community wardens, community support officers would be money better spent on actual policemen who have a power of arrest and have a greater presence on our streets. At the moment in Margate it takes 6 plus people to from community wardens to the actaul police to attend to a minor infringement, which is a waste of resources. Different uniforms for the above is also not helping, as the public are confused who does what.

  4. We seem to have a problem here. The anger of the police is directed at the refusal of this government to honour an independant pay review body. Our police have no right to strike, but have to place their pay negotiations in the hands of this independant body. If the government cannot trust an independant body to come up with a fair figure, they should set police pay themselves, but give the police a right to withdraw their labour

  5. The Govt does not have the constitutional authority to pass legislation enabling police to strike.

    The Office of Constable is a Crown Office (not to be confused with the rank of Constable). Each constable is an independent ministerial officer of the Crown. He is not in a master servant relationship with his Chief constable.

    He can be charged with duties "By whomsoever and in whatsoever way" but it has become convention to phone the Police in order that they charge a constable with the duty.

    A "Constabulary" is merely a collective noun for an organisation of individual constables.

    Within a Constabulary (unlike the Armed Forces) there are no orders (an order to Zero tolerate is unlawful). Officers are "Charged with duties".

    The only "Order" binding on a Constable has to be separately sourced from within the structure of the admin of justice. IE "Warrant" issued by Judge, Magistrate or Coroner.

    Every constable take an oath to the Queen. The Constable Oath is bound only by the surpreme oath in the admin of justice which was administered to QE2 at her Coronation. When she became SOLE source of authority for the administration of justice in the land.

    When a constable retires or resigns from a publicly funded police force he does not relinquish the Office of Constable unless for two quid he goes to a solicitor and unswears his oath.

    Every duty charged to a constable in service is binding on him to pursue unto law unbto his own death.

    The case I am building a blog about has been described as the most important police constitutional case since 1829 (by a barrister MP). The issues include that 17 years after resigning I discovered new evidence in a duty charged to me in 72. I discovered (and gathered evidence) that in 1972 the Chief constable had allagedly conspired to pervert justice in the case. And due to Freedom of INformation in New Zealand I was able to get a copy of the Chief constable's April 1972 report via Home Secretary to the New Zealand Govt who I learnt were trying in 72 to re-open the inquesty on their citizen Matron McGill who died in Suffolk, on my beat, Jan 1972.

    In short I discovered evidence against both GOVERNMENT and CHIEF CONSTABLE.

    The public interest issue is this. The principle of law is that no matter how high you are the law must be above you.

    And the means by which our constitution ensures that Govt (In my case MI5 Special Branch liaison and Home Office) and Chief constables are not above the law, is that the CONSTABLE has but one master the law itself under the Crown.

    In my case the Attorney General feels that he has a power as Absolute Secret Custodioan of Public Interest to deny me access to the High Court for me to quash the suicide verdict handed down to Matron McGill in 1972.

    My position is that public interest is defined by the Constitutional Monarchy. No Constable, unto death, discharges duty to a Govt officer. He discharges duty to Judge in Open Court and No Other.

    I am pretty sure that the area of govt sensitivity in my duty is concerned with the postwar Vatican ratlines and the measures set up by MI6 postwar to smuggle Nazi war criminals (useful to our intelligence and nuclear interests) ... but my duty is to Matron McGill Decd. If any govt agency has an interest in arguing national interest then let them do it to a Judge. A death occurred on my beat and as far as I am concerned unto death I will seek under the Oath Judicial discharge of the duty. Come MI6, OIRA hell or high water.

    When you go along the route of treating constables as employees (Civil Servants in uniform) then you have reached the situation Winstonm Churchill warned us against. That Labour would change our police into their own Gestapo.

    It is the fact that in the history of fighting this case I have been helped by Jonathan Aitken MP, Roger Evans MP ( a barrister) and the late Sir John Stradling Thomas MP (all TORY) and refusal to help has been by Huw Edwards MP and Steve Ladyman MP (both LABOUR)

    To undermine the Queen as sole fount of justice is treason. That surely would be the situation of Govt tried to change the status of constables (it has stealthily been doing this)

    I think it is overdue that the Queen made a constitutional stand. And I know who the country would back.

    When recently the Head of the Army said that no one should be in doubt about the constitutional position of the Army (Crown) perhaps New Labour should have been listening a bit more carefully.

  6. How about a thread on corporate profits?

  7. If you enter a process of arbitration then the final decision should be accepted as final and not ignored as the Government has done. Its not even that much money in the grand scheme of things, around £40million. Strange that the Government can't find around £40million for the police because of inflationary concerns, but can find £2,700million at a drop of a hat for a temporary tax cut to make up for their tax increase over a year ago.