Police face pay rise delay
POLICE officers across Suffolk were facing fresh anxiety last night after it emerged this year's pay rise had still not been agreed.The Staff Side of the Police Negotiating Board (PNB), which negotiates the hours of duty, pay and allowances of UK police force workers, put forward a claim for a 3% increase in pay at its July meeting.
By Danielle Nuttall
POLICE officers across Suffolk were facing fresh anxiety last night after it emerged this year's pay rise had still not been agreed.
The Staff Side of the Police Negotiating Board (PNB), which negotiates the hours of duty, pay and allowances of UK police force workers, put forward a claim for a 3% increase in pay at its July meeting.
The pay award is usually honoured in September - however, Suffolk Police Federation claims the Official Side of the board has still not accepted the proposal, which means police officers are unlikely to see any pay increase next month or even in October.
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Phil Smith, federation secretary, said he was furious at the delay and warned it would further dent the morale of police workers, who had faced months of job uncertainty over merger plans.
“There has been a lot of uncertainty among police staff because of amalgamation and the effect on morale that has brought and this is yet another blow to that level of morale,” he said.
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“We are going to have police officers worrying about their pay rise when we would like them to be worried about responding to and detecting crime.
“This is a whole lot of uncertainty we just do not need. We are trying to implement government programmes, is this a way of encouraging adoption of the police reform programme?”
Mr Smith blamed the reason for the delay on the Official Side of the PNB wanting to change the formula at which pay rises are set.
He claimed it had not yet put forward a paper detailing the proposals, which left the Staff Side unable to negotiate. Mr Smith added that civilian staff were also facing uncertainty over their own pay rise as it is traditionally set after that of officers.
“We are furious. It's an agreed formula we have worked to since 1979,” he said.
“We would urge them to sort it out quickly.”
A spokeswoman for the Home Office said last night: “The situation is that we take police pay extremely seriously. Every year, the Staff Side claim for up-rating of police pay - this year is no different.
“The Official Side of the PNB is now considering the claim by the Staff Side and will respond in the near future.”
The spokeswoman added that any pay increase would be backdated.