Police jobs to go 'unless pay is cut'

Police officers must accept cuts to their pay packets to avoid losing thousands of frontline jobs, Home Secretary Theresa May said today.

Mrs May said she did not want to make savings for the sake of it, but "extraordinary circumstances" mean the Government must reform terms and conditions to keep officers on the streets.

Her speech comes ahead of an independent review of police pay and conditions by former rail regulator Tom Winsor, which will be published on Tuesday.

Mrs May called for all forces to follow the example of the Metropolitan Police in getting officers to patrol alone rather than in pairs.

"By getting more officers to patrol alone - rather than in pairs - and by better matching resources to demand in neighbourhood policing, they are increasing officer availability to the public by 25%," she said.

"I know other forces including Gloucestershire are taking the same steps. All forces should be following their example."

On pay and conditions, Mrs May said that in all likelihood there would be a two-year pay freeze in policing, saving £350 million.

"No home secretary wants to cut police officers' pay packages," she said. "But with a record budget deficit, these are extraordinary circumstances."

In a document by the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) which outlined potential savings in August, members suggested scrapping a host of additional payments and bonuses, as well as reducing the amount of overtime paid for working on public holidays.

Other arrangements, including compensation for cancelled rest days, may also be changed or axed completely.

Police have been criticised for a £450 million a year overtime bill and other "out-of-date" remuneration rules.

Figures released by the Met in August revealed five constables boosted their wages by £50,000 with overtime.

In May, police minister Nick Herbert welcomed a call by Scotland Yard boss Sir Paul Stephenson to end the multimillion-pound police bonus culture, saying it reflected the financially "straitened times".

The Winsor review, which will report on Tuesday, will include scrutiny of allowances, overtime and the cost of officers working in other force areas.

It will cover both police officers and civilian staff, including community support officers (PCSOs), across the 43 forces in England and Wales.

Previous attempts to overhaul pay and conditions have failed.

The last review, carried out in June 1993 by Sir Patrick Sheehy under then-home secretary Kenneth Clarke, recommended abolishing jobs for life, introducing fixed terms of service and scrapping overtime payments.

But most of the recommendations were never implemented after a high-profile campaign by the Police Federation, which represents rank-and-file officers in England and Wales.

Labour home secretary Jacqui Smith tried to save money in 2008 by rejecting a recommended pay increase - but again was forced to back down after marches by officers.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
Life and Style
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
tv
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Account Manager

£20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This full service social media ...

Recruitment Genius: Data Analyst - Online Marketing

£24000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We are 'Changemakers in retail'...

Austen Lloyd: Senior Residential Conveyancer

Very Competitive: Austen Lloyd: Senior Conveyancer - South West We are see...

Austen Lloyd: Residential / Commercial Property Solicitor

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: DORSET MARKET TOWN - SENIOR PROPERTY SOLICITOR...

Day In a Page

Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there