Latest Public Sector News

23.03.12

Police to be balloted on the right to strike

The Police Federation has declared that police officers in England and Wales are to be balloted on whether they want to be given the right to strike.

Currently, police officers are legally banned from taking industrial action, yet after 20% budget cuts and suggestions for the most extensive reform of pay and conditions in over 30 years, there is set to be a vote from 135,000 members of the federation.

In addition, a rally has also been set for May, planned to go ahead before the federation’s annual conference. The federation aims to “highlight the unprecedented attack on policing by this government” and explore the consequences of police officers gaining complete industrial rights. Moreover, it wishes to highlight the results that policing cuts will have on public safety.

The movement also comes as a result of the Winsor Review which was published last week. The review suggested that chief constables should have the authority to make police officers compulsorily redundant to cut costs. The Policing Federation argued that the Winsor Review was “deliberately offensive”; “ill-considered” and produced from “previously-rejected ideas.”

In May 2008, there was a similar ballot which resulted in an overwhelming 87% of those who participated demanding full industrial rights for the police in the absence of a compulsory arbitration procedure to settle pay disputes.

A Home Office statement was released, which declared: “We will consider the proposals of the independent Winsor review carefully, ensuring that the remuneration and status of police officers continues to reflect the important work they do.”

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