Mark stands up for fair pay for police

December 12, 2007 4:07 PM
Mark police

Mark with local police officers

Mark Hunter, MP for the Cheadle Constituency this week spoke out in support of demands from local police officers to be given a fair pay rise after receiving dozens of complaints from police officers living in his constituency.

Police officers are outraged by the decision of the Home Secretary the Rt Hon Jacqui Smith MP to not honour an independent decision of the Police Arbitration Tribunal. The Police Arbitration Tribunal decided to award police officers a 2.5% pay increase which would be back dated to 1st September. However in a leaked document the Secretary of State announced that the pay would only be paid from 1st December - in effect meaning that instead of a 2.5% pay increases police officer would only receive a 1.9% increase. This would represent a lower award than any other emergency service or public sector body in England and Wales.

Mr Hunter joined local police officers and other Liberal Democrat colleagues in calling for the Home Secretary to reconsider her position and backdate the pay, so that they would receive the 2.5% pay rise that they deserve. Mr Hunter met this morning with members of the Greater Manchester branch of the Police Federation. During the meeting Mr Hunter expressed his support and offered to help by writing to the Police Minister the Rt Hon Tony McNulty MP. Mr Hunter has also signed Early Day Motions 494 and 512 calling for the Government to deal with this issue now.

Speaking after the meeting with Police Federation Members Mr Hunter said: "It is absolutely disgraceful that the police have been let down by the Government yet again. Not only are they insulting police officers by planning to avoid paying them a fair wage, but they made the situation worse by trying to cover this up.

In my opinion the Government has failed our hard working police force. They have also failed to prioritise the needs of the police men and women that work tirelessly to keep our street safe often in very dangerous circumstances. We know from our area that the police force are already overstretched, and feel that the Government does not give them enough support. I have received countless letters on this matter from police officer who feel that this situation has only served to prove that Government has no appreciation of the job that they do. This simply isn't good enough!

I and my Liberal Democrat colleagues are calling for the arbitration system to be binding to the Home Secretary as well as the Police. Quite frankly she should honour the decision made by panel, backdate the police pay and apologise to the police for the manner in which her department has dealt with this issue."

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