David J. Farley of Plympton, Plymouth, United Kingdom

David J. Farley of Plympton, Plymouth, United Kingdom

Friday, October 17, 2014

Clop Shop: Horse appears at front 'canter'

Local equine resident who wandered into Cheshire's Police HQ from a nearby field posed 'neigh' risk to security.

Front of house staff are quite used to seeing long faces walk through their doors in the early hours, but not ones that come in on four legs.

Staff at Cheshire Police's HQ had never seen (or herd) anything like the horse approaching the automatic door. Despite their attempts to stop it from entering, the animal galloped into the station, straight through its mane entrance.

The horse had wandered in from a nearby field and was eventually safely hoofed off the premises, in the early hours of October 6.

Superintendent Peter Crowcroft said: “We were some what saddled with our unexpected guest, who in the early hours of the morning quickly became the mane event of the night shift.

"We like to ensure a warm welcome to all our guests at HQ, and at neigh point did the horse pose a risk to security and appeared to be a well cared for animal."

Article courtesy of Scott Docherty - www.policeoracle.com

Monday, October 06, 2014

Concerns police officers are 'too busy to eat'

MP and Federation rep speak out over impact of workload on officers' diet and health.

Police officers are being forced to forgo food all day in some cases because they are too busy to eat, an MP has claimed.

Simon Danczuk, the Labour MP for Rochdale, said he feared for the welfare of officers who had told him excessive demands on their time meant they were effectively having to either fast while on duty or grab junk food and hurriedly consume it "on the run".

Mr Danczuk told PoliceOracle.com: "That is what has been said to us by serving officers. It's a pretty desperate situation."

He added: "It concerns me that if they can't stop and have something to eat they are clearly overworked, and they won't be performing at their best. If they are eating on the run it is also a far from ideal situation. Something has got to change."

Greater Manchester Police Federation Chairman Ian Hanson said officers were often not able to take breaks to eat.

He said: "Police officers realise that this will sometimes happen, but what we are hearing now is that it is becoming, in some cases, accepted that they are not getting any time to have a break.

"Can you give me an example of any other job where people are routinely expected to work for 10 hours and are not having the opportunity to have a break in the middle of that?"

He said officers' health could be put at risk if they had to either keep working on an empty stomach or quickly eat convenience food.

Greater Manchester's Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd has acknowledged that budget cuts have impacted on police resources in the city.

'Macho culture'

Not eating for a single day can cause low blood sugar levels that can lead to anxiety, sweating, headaches and even blurred vision.

Food expert Gillian Riley said a "macho culture" could be partly to blame if officers were not eating properly.

Ms Riley, a food writer and the author of several books including The Oxford Companion to Italian Food, said: "The scary thing is that if they are undernourished they will not be able to do the job adequately.

"There is this whole macho thing of 'oh, I'm too busy to eat', and the ubiquity of junk food, which is another factor.

"They might go off on a job because they are 'too busy to eat', or just eat some junk food at their desk, when the common sense thing is to go off on their own for a short while and get a salad or something."

She added that a poor diet could lead to a lack of physical fitness among police officers - and said being able to take breaks to eat properly was also important from a psychological perspective.

Article courtesy of Josh Loeb of: www.policeoracle.com

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Ukraine Air Disaster

Like millions of others worldwide, I have been deeply shocked by the pictures on television of the catastrophic air disaster over eastern Ukraine last Thursday 17th July, involving the apparent shooting down by one or more surface to air missiles, of the Malaysian Airways Boeing 777 passenger aircraft flight number MH17 with the total loss of all 298 innocent passengers and crew including 80 children.

I would like to add my personal condolences to all the many tributes posted on the Internet to the families and friends of those, of whatever nationality, who perished in such unimaginable circumstances.

Such an evil act must not go unpunished by whomsoever was responsible for this appalling act of treachery. The vast family of law abiding and free nations must pull together to establish the full truth of what happened and to hold the guilty to account.

To the deceased, may their souls rest in peace, and to their families and friends, may you find some strength from the knowledge that millions of people worldwide share your grief and sorrow.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Shift patterns 'force police to sleep on the streets'

Claims officers are bedding down on benches, under bridges and in train stations due to lack of facilities.

Changes to working patterns mean some officers are resorting to sleeping on the streets because they have no means of getting home to bed after finishing late shifts, a Police Federation official has warned.

Deputy General Secretary of the Metropolitan Police Federation Dennis Weeks said officers were bedding down on benches, under bridges and in train stations after finishing shifts in the early hours of the morning after trains had stopped running.

“Officers are not allowed to sleep in police stations, so they are going to train stations and sleeping there or on benches near the station so that as soon as the first train leaves they can go home,” he said. “It makes them vulnerable to being criminally assaulted, the impact on their health is extremely bad and bad weather can make it difficult.

“An officer might end up finishing at 1am and missing the late train, meaning they cannot get home because night buses only go within London. There used to be police section houses with accommodation for officers all over London, but now there is just one.”

No accommodation

The peak time when officers are needed in London boroughs is between around 7pm and 1am, but after this time crime tails off, meaning keeping officers on overnight would be inefficient.

Met officers who live outside of London often commute dozens of miles to work by train even if they are motorists because of a scarcity of spaces caused by sell offs of police car parks and strict restrictions on parking in some areas.

Westminster, Camden and Kensington and Chelsea are among the boroughs where the problem is most acute, Mr Weeks said – but he stressed officers who were sleeping on the streets did so on a “sporadic” basis and not for long periods of time.

He added: “During the Olympics we had officers sleeping under bridges. The organisational ability to house people in emergency situations has been depleted.”

Asked whether any off duty officers found sleeping rough had been moved on by their on duty colleagues, Mr Weeks said: “Our people can be moved on from places the same as anyone else.”

He also highlighted “anti-homeless” metal spokes which prevented people – potentially including sleeping policemen - from catching forty winks.

‘Heard stories’

At a London Assembly Police and Crime Panel meeting this week, panel member Len Duvall told Met Police Deputy Commissioner Craig Mackey he had heard about police sleeping on the streets of London.

“I have heard those stories as well,” the Deputy Commissioner replied, “but certainly (I have heard about) sleeping in police stations and all those things that we do not want.”

DC Mackey said the Met faced a tension because “work demand” meant officers “finishing at 2am or 3am” and the fact that in some London boroughs “for anyone who does not live in that borough finishing at 3am (poses) real practical things like they cannot get home if they have not got their own transport.”

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe added: “A lot of our people live outside of London and have to travel a distance. If the transport stops and they cannot bring a car in, it causes a tension. We realise that and are doing our best to resolve it, but it is not straightforward.”

Article courtesy of Josh Loeb of www.policeoracle.com

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Labour government 'would reduce number of police forces'

Labour will seek to cut the number of police forces in England and Wales if it wins the next general election to free up cash to bolster neighbourhood policing.

Addressing the ACPO conference in Harrogate, Shadow Policing Minister Jack Dromey told delegates that there would be less than 43 forces by the end of the party’s five-year term.

He also hinted Labour could abolish police and crime commissioners and introduce a new form of governance – although he stopped short of committing to the proposal.

Mr Dromey said: “It is a nonsense to continue with 43 separate forces in England and Wales – it has been said to me time and time again that it is the enemy of operational effectiveness. It is certainly the enemy of efficiency.

“At the end of the first term of a Labour government there would not be 43 forces.”

Mr Dromey said that Labour’s plans to raise funds to bolster neighbourhood policing are currently being put together.

He added that the neighbourhood policing policy – introduced by a previous Labour administration – had been successful but had been placed under threat by the cuts of the Coalition Government.

During his speech to the conference, Mr Dromey said there were a number of convincing proposals put forward in the Lord Stevens independent commission into the future of policing.

The party commissioned the former Met commissioner to carry out a comprehensive investigation in 2012, which had involved the consultation of several international law enforcement professionals.

In outlining the party's policy ahead of the general election in 2015, he said there were compelling arguments in Lord Stevens' recommendations to reduce the numbers of forces as well as abolishing the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) and creating a new body.

He suggested that the IPCC did not have the confidence of either the police or the public – adding that the government was wrong to enhance funding of the body.

Mr Dromey believed that more could be achieved by bringing together the IPCC and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary – as suggested by Lord Stevens.

During his speech he emphasised that Police Service leaders would not always like what any future Labour government would have to say. But he stressed that the party would “stand up for the best of British policing”.

The senior MP also asserted that there needed to be sound and thorough investigations into past incidences, such as the Hillsborough and the Stephen Lawrence murder probe.

Article courtesy of Cliff Caswell. www.policeoracle.com

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

How far from the truth ?

Barack Obama and David Cameron are shown a time machine which can see 100 years into the future.

They both decide to test it by asking a question each. Barack goes first.

“What will the USA be like in 100 years time?”

The machine whirs and beeps and goes into action and gives him a printout, he reads it out

"The country is in good hands under the new president, Crime is non-existent, There is no conflict, the economy is healthy. There are no worries”

David thinks “It's not bad this time machine, I'll have a bit of that” so he asks:

“What will England be like in 100 years time?”

The machine whirs and beeps and goes into action, and he gets a printout. But he just stares at it.

“Come on David” says Barack, “What does it say”

David replies,

“Buggered if I know! It's not in English!”

Friday, May 30, 2014

World Cup policing operation gathers pace

Six police officers from across the UK will head to Brazil during the World Cup to ensure a safe and trouble-free tournament.

The UK plans to send six police officers to Brazil during the 2014 World Cup to offer support and advice to Brazilian police and local authorities.

The team in the South American country will be led by Chief Superintendent Rachel Barber of South Yorkshire Police, supported by the national police lead on football, Deputy Chief Constable Andy Holt who will act as Gold commander based in the UK.

Ch Supt Barber will be joined by deputy director Roger Evans from UK Football Policing Unit, Bedfordshire PC Chris Hawkes, GMP PC Ashley Keyte, West Midlands PC Stewart Bladen, Hampshire PC Paul Foley and Norfolk PC Andy King.

The UK policing delegation will remain in Brazil as long as the England team is in contention.

DCC Holt said: “British police are among the best in the world at policing football matches and it is testament to their work with supporters groups and others involved in the game that serious football violence has declined. At the last World Cup in 2010 there were only seven arrests of England fans, none of them for football-related violence."

As reported on PoliceOracle.com, the policing operation during the last competition in South Africa won significant acclaim. A combination of a strong message to fans and effective enforcement of Football Banning Orders with operations at airports saw an effective clampdown on disorder.

The action included an action at Southampton Airport led by Superintendent Ricky Burrows, an authority on football policing at Hampshire Constabulary.

DCC Holt said his team would again be encouraging fans to look after themselves and there would be a fresh campaign to target those subject to Football Banning Orders, encouraging them to surrender their passports to police stations as required.

He added that there would be "a firm but friends policing operation" during the World Cup in the UK, with a particular focus on preventing alcohol related disorder.

Article courtesy of Alex Iszatt - www.policeoracle.com