Officers 'dread going into work' because of rest day cancellations
Officers in the Met dread going into work in case their rest days or annual leave have been cancelled.
Delegates at the Police Federation of England and Wales Annual Conference heard that Met officers are owed 220,000 rest days – and that figure is only likely to rise.
Chairman Ken Marsh questioned panel members taking part in a session on ‘protecting our service’, which heard about the impact of demand on police officers’ mental health.
Responding to Ken’s question, HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary Sir Tom Winsor was applauded when he described as 'unacceptable' that the police service has demand pushed onto it from other public services.
Sir Tom said: “The failures of other public services push demand onto the police, which is demand that the police shouldn’t deal with. That is just not acceptable.
For example, why don’t we have child and adolescent mental health services that work seven days a week?
“When police can be relied upon to get the job done there is less pressure on leaders to bring about much needed improvement.
“Tired and frazzled people will make mistakes – and they will make honest mistakes – and they will be blamed for it, but where does the blame really lie? Something has to give.”
Durham PCC Ron Hogg also called on the Government to give the police service four years of financial settlements “so we can alleviate the kind of problems you are talking about”.
PFEW Vice-Chair Che Donald added: “This is unfortunately replicated up and down the country.
“Officers who are overworked, over stressed and responding to incidents but if something goes wrong it’s the police officer who’s highlighted as being in the wrong but when in fact it’s the service who’ve let the officer down.”