Home Secretary's letter causes unease over pay review
Leicestershire Police Federation chairman Tiff Lynch says there is unease over the latest moves towards the annual review of police officer pay.
Home Secretary Amber Rudd has written to the Police Remuneration Review Body (PRRB) setting out plans for the 2018/19 review. Earlier this year, the Government awarded a two per cent increase as a one per cent pensionable pay rise across the board, plus one per cent as an extra amount which was non-pensionable.
The chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales (PFEW), Steve White, said at the time that would leave many officers feeling "angry and deflated".
Naturally, officers around the country are interested in the latest discussions and Tiff believes the PRRB has been put in a very difficult position by the Home Secretary's latest letter outlining its remit.
Ms Rudd asks the PRRB to make recommendations on pay based on four areas including:
- National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) proposals and a timetable for a new pay structure;
- NPCC proposals for apprenticeship pay;
- NPCC proposals for time-limited targeted payments to address recruitment and retention pressures, and
- Observations on NPCC reform proposals and their timetable.
PFEW has written to the chair of the PRRB expressing concerns that the Home Secretary's letter gives the impression that pay and reward plans being formulated by the NPCC are more advanced than they believe them to be - and the PRRB is being asked to make decisions based on them.
"This puts the review body in a very difficult situation," says Tiff, "Given the lack of completed plans shared by the NPCC to date, this creates a significant challenge in terms of the PRRB being able to identify any unintended consequences or the degree to which the plans may be acceptable and a workable solution for police officers.
"We have serious concerns that the PRRB is being expected to make recommendations based on a lot of NPCC ifs, buts and maybes. Police pay is far too important to officers across England and Wales to base assumptions on blueprint schemes and ideas. It is grossly unfair to expect the staff associations representing those officers to be able to properly represent their interests without all the detail of the proposals being shared.
"It is also unfair to the PRRB which will be expected to try to make recommendations based on loose assumptions."
Submissions to the PRRB are being requested by early February 2018.