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Scottish Police Federation Manifesto, A Call To Action

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posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 05:24 AM

The SPF firmly believes that austerity is not a necessity but a political choice.

. . .

This manifesto is a call to action to whoever forms the next Scottish Government

The Manifesto.

Some excerpts.

Abolish policing targets and reduce red tape

Targets are counter-productive, drive the wrong kinds of behaviours and ultimately, deliver little more than fodder for politicians to argue amongst themselves.

. . .

Improving democratic participation for police officers

Scotland has never been more politically active or engaged than it is now, but a large number of public sector workers are unable to contribute to political decision making and opinion forming. Nowhere is that more true than in the case of police officers.

We consider it is appropriate to restrict police officers from taking a partisan role in politics.

However, we believe there is room to consider their participation in other aspects of political life. Police officers have skills, insight and ideas that could enrich our politics and in a modern, progressive and forward thinking country, should have that freedom to be able to contribute.

. . .

Stop criminalising mental health

Police cells should not be considered as appropriate places for people waiting to be assessed under the Mental Health (Scotland) Act.

It is increasingly common for individuals suffering from psychotic, depressive or manic episodes to find themselves in cells or some other form of custody pending assessment.

. . .

While intoxication is not a medical emergency, the consequences can be. Locking up drunk people in cells is no longer an acceptable way to manage that risk.

. . .

Social responsibility levy

In Scotland today, some industries have an unintentionally disproportionate impact on local communities as a result of their activities.

We believe that if you are happy to enjoy the cause, then you should be willing to pay for the effect.

We believe that the introduction of a levy that can be applied to any commercial activity or industry whose activities have a disproportionate impact on local communities or services should be considered. Such levies can be used to improve communities and mitigate against the problems caused by anti-social behaviour.

. . .

Meeting our maritime responsibilities

Scotland is a maritime nation with more than 6,000 miles of coastline used for leisure, business and commerce. Our seas cover a greater territorial area than all our land mass added together yet these go largely unpoliced.

A Scottish maritime police service would ensure we adhere to environmental legislation, discourage crime, protect our fisheries and provide reassurance to those using our waters for fun. We believe opportunities exist to share vessels and work with other agencies, protecting our coastline and preserving our maritime assets for future generations.

Increasing participation in political life starts with us conversing with them. The manifesto gives a clear list of points we can discuss.

" . . . austerity is not a necessity . . ." That sounds like a good point.

"Targets are counter-productive . . . " There's another.

I like this manifesto.

What says ATS?

edit on 17 4 2016 by Kester because: spacing

posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 06:49 AM
a reply to: Kester

Makes too much sense, so on that notion, it will never see the light of day

posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 06:57 AM
a reply to: Kester

I like to see participation like this, but I reject the notion that a police force paid for by the public and with a remit to treat everyone the same based on the rule of law, should be able to express a collective opinion on politics in this way. It's not appropriate.

What is appropriate is for each person to make their opinions known as a private citizen, campaign as a private citizen, vote as a private citizen.

It's also acceptable for police officers to collectively campaign for something pertaining to the prevention of crime and increase of safety.

When you have a group of people who should be blindly serving the whole population, under a rule of law, they should not be expressing collective opinions as a lobbying group.

That's just my opinion, but although I agree with pretty much everything they've said it's a dangerous path to take when you have people whose job is to serve all seemingly starting to pick political battles as a "pressure group". This sends the wrong message.

Police officers are supposed to be unbiased, following one specific set of rules in their job to provide services to all regardless of any other societal implications. The moment they step out of that simple frame it becomes risky.

posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 06:57 AM
a reply to: Kester

Had a read through it and there are some valid points. There are also some that make little sense.

The "too much red tape" issue I find a bit strange. If there wasn't the red tape then accountability would be harder. I know red tape is a pain, but it is needed to keep everyone above board.

On the other hand, the issue of targets I think should be abolished. It's a police force, not a business and shouldn't be run like one.

As for keeping drunks and the mentally ill in cells? Sometimes there's nowhere else for them, unfortunately. I'd rather see someone who's a risk to themselves and others be in a cell for a day or 2 before they can get real help, than let out and possibly harm (or worse) themselves or others.

Like I said, it's got some very valid and some not so valid points. Be interesting to see something like this (with amendments) go through and to see if it would work in real life rather than the paper model.

posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 09:15 AM
I see that it some very positive points. What if they put the drunks
& mentally ill were put in a cell until they are in no danger to themselves
or others. The drunk be released without charges if he was only drunk & the
mentally ill person released to family or friend after their psychotic episode
if safe but must check in to the hospital or get on the wait list if space is not
Their record be expunged after so many days or after treatment at the
hospital as long as they had not harmed anyone or damaged anything. This
would help keep their record clean for future employment & etc.
I know it may not be possible but since the subject was mentioned I was trying to think positive.


posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 11:00 AM
Most mentally ill that end up in police cells following an episode, are already known to the authorities.

Following funding cuts, some will have been released into the community and will only see their keyworker/CPN weekly, if that.

Care in the community does not work. Especially when community care services are cut to the bone. In many areas of the UK, 'care' for the mentally ill is left with the community, the landlord (housing associations usually) and the police, none of whom are qualified in dealing with the unique problems each mentally ill person presents.

I think it a good thing SPF have taken a more politically astute approach in this manifesto. I think it shows they are and accept they are, part of the common herd and do not want to have their working practices dictated by political ideologies that understand nothing of the lives of ordinary men and women.

posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 11:18 AM
a reply to: Kester

A difficult one.

As you rightly point out they make some excellent and valid points.

But I'm uncomfortable with the idea of a Police Federation becoming involved in policy making and politics.

Surely the police force's role is to uphold the law and not make the law.
They are not the tool of governments, political parties or ideologies.

Of course the police should be consulted on policy issues but it is a very dangerous and slippery road we are going down if we allow them to set policies and agenda's.

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