Suffolk: Police civilian jobs in jeopardy as collaboration continues with Norfolk

Three bailed in relation to trafficking labour exploitation

Three bailed in relation to trafficking labour exploitation - Credit: Archant

More than 70 civilian jobs are ‘at risk’ in Suffolk and Norfolk as the counties’ two police forces continue their advancement of collaboration.

A total of 38 staff in Suffolk have already been made redundant during the first two years of the process of centralising work between the constabularies.

Many of what are known as back office functions have been reviewed and combined in order to contribute to the multi-million pounds worth of savings both forces have been compelled to make.

It in the latest move staff at Landmark House in Whitehouse Road, Ipswich, and at bases elsewhere, have been told their jobs will be affected.

Although the exact number of Suffolk posts which are involved has not been revealed, the constabulary has said 72 staff in both forces are currently ‘at risk’. It is thought that the number of jobs affected in Suffolk accounts for slightly less than half this figure.

Nearly 340 civilian jobs have been under review in the two counties since the process began in early 2011, resulting in a total of 80 redundancies.

Although police officers can not be made redundant, the number of officers in Suffolk was also decreased after government cutbacks left millions needing to be slashed from the constabulary’s budget.

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In 2010 the force had a strength of 1245 officers, which went down to 1171 in 2012. However, it is now around the 1,200 mark after a freeze on recruitment was lifted.

At one stage to help get the numbers down Suffolk Constabulary implemented regulation A19, which gave it the power to end officers’ contracts when they had reached 30 years’ service.

In a statement relating to the latest round of civilian jobs being in jeopardy Suffolk Constabulary said: “Suffolk Constabulary is involved with Norfolk Constabulary in a programme of collaboration as a way of driving down costs and providing services in the most cost effective way.

“This programme commenced in early 2011 and has resulted in the reorganisation or restructure of a number of departments within both organisations.

The latest part of the ongoing programme includes Joint Criminal Justice Services and Joint Performance and Analysis and this has resulted in 72 police staff being placed ‘at risk’ of redundancy.

“Consultation with UNISON and with individuals in both Suffolk and Norfolk is ongoing with the common objective of minimising the number of staff that may be redeployed or made redundant.

“Since the start of this programme, 339 members of police staff have been placed ‘at risk’ of redundancy across both Forces, however due to the careful management of the process, actual redundancies have been kept to 42 in Norfolk Constabulary and 38 in Suffolk Constabulary.”