Einstein : Not everything that can be counted counts. And not everything that counts can be counted.

Thursday, 12 April 2007

Investing in People ?

Investing in People ? Now what's all that about then ?

Sounds like another trendy in-phrase that gets bandied about and is great in practice but is ignored in reality. Perhaps you've never been shafted by the management and you think itis a good thing. Perhaps, then again, you have been shafted and the phrase 'investing in people' leaves a particularly nasty taste in your mouth. I'll help you search for the mouthwash.

Sheltered accommodation for sex offenders

Five convicted sex offenders in Miami have been forced to live under a noisy highway bridge by the local authorities.
The five men live under the Julia Tuttle Causeway because of laws which prevent sex offenders from living near schools, parks and other places children gather. The law makes it nearly impossible for them to find housing.
Some of the men sleep on cardboard raised slightly off the ground to avoid the rats.
"You just pray to God every night, so if you fall asleep for a minute or two, you know, nothing happens to you," said 30-year-old Javier Diaz.
County Commissioner Jose Diaz said he had no regrets about the law he created.
"My main concern is the victims, the children that are the innocent ones that these predators attack and ruin their lives," Diaz said.
A parole officer checks on the men nearly every night as they must stay at the bridge between 10pm and 6am.
They have fishing poles to catch food, cook with small stoves, use battery-powered TVs and radios and keep their belongings in plastic bags.
Now I can just imagine this sort of thing happening over here with our 'Tough on Crime' attitude, can't you ? Sounds like they are deserving cases.

Wednesday, 11 April 2007

Locked away, securely ?

It appears that some more 'dangerous' convicted criminals have decided to walk out of an open prison. This is something that appears to happen with a monotonous regularity. These are not your average low level offenders but serious and dangerous people who should not be approached by the public. Murder being one of the offences here. What the bloody hell is this type of convicted person doing in an open prison ? We'll find them and issue them with a penalty notice, that'll frighten them. Tough on crime.

All in the same boat ?

Somewhere down in the Constabulary, out there, somewhere, there seems to be confusion about allocation of incidents, locally known as 'jobs' from communications to the officers out on the ground. It may be the case that jobs are allocated to increase the numbers of jobs being allocated and thusly reduce the time taken to allocate those jobs to the units on the ground. Possibly because this is something being measured for the sake of statistical information. Trouble is, the units on the ground are laden with several jobs so the attendance time shows a delay which may possibly be affecting the times between allocation and attendance. It may possibly be that this is something else that is subject of measurement for the purposes of statistical information. Those who do the allocating are seen to be improving one set of times but the result is that those who are allocated are faced with longer delays before they attend. There could be misunderstandings ahead when the resultant statistics are subject to the usual performance improvement scrutiny.

Penalty Notice success ?

The Home Office insist that the on the spot fines from penalty notices are working, allegedly. Apparently they allow for fast and effective justice and are keen to extend the scheme. When you consider recent media reports that half of the fines are not paid, as high as two thirds in some areas, then the success is clear for all to see. The cost of issuing will be calculated at some point and I dread to think of the costs of chasing the non-payers through the courts to recover the costs. Labour are keen to extend the scheme to include offences like 'wasting Police time', funnily enough. Perhaps this is just a coincidence. Saving Police time and reducing bureaucracy. Now where have I heard that before ?

Tuesday, 10 April 2007

Freedom of Expression

So, freedom of expression…...................What's all that about then ? My understanding is, that it is being permitted to express your opinion in a public forum even if others may disagree with you? The UN have decreed in the Universal declaration of Human Rights that: Everyone has the right to opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

So, Police Reform............What is all that about ? http://www.policereform.com/reports.aspx should give you some of the answers......................if you can get your head around it. Some pretty charts and some rather cute catchy phrases.

Got to go, I've got some more forms that urgently need to be filled out, now if I can just find a free terminal.

Saturday, 7 April 2007

Pay Restraint ordered.

It seems that there is an eager push to call for pay restraint within the public service sector. I am sure we will be included in this when our time comes around.

I trust that all will be equal in other areas, but perhaps not all as equal as it should be, http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/6205852.stm

It appears to be some form of confusion if you believe there is even one grain of truth in the stories. Just exactly how can MPs ask for such an obscene rise ? Just exactly what productivity targets do their SMT set for them ? Oh I forgot, they don't have people telling them what to do, they appear to be able to do exactly as they want. Perhaps they are a special case ?

Friday, 6 April 2007

Talking CCTV

No, its not a joke, the really is talking CCTV.


Another development of Big Brother overseeing a town or city near you, an invaluable aide to public safety and crime prevention or another step to replacing officers on the streets ??? You decide. They don't go off for refs breaks, don't get tied up with all that paperwork and waste valuable time off the streets, don't go off sick, are potentially on duty 24/7, don't have POLACS, can't be seen to be discriminatory in any way.
Sounds like just the job.

Personal issue computers

Heard an interesting story the other day. Picture this, a busy place where officers need to have daily access to computer technology to input the myriad of duplicated statistics, get the latest intel, crime trends, check messages etc etc etc. Sometimes they have to do this more than once a day. Within this building there is one particular piece of expensive and modern equipment, a valuable Force resource that is effectively withdrawn from general use for the greater percentage of its available potential use. Why ? Well because its user decides to lock away the keyboard and mouse to prevent others from using it. Is it personal issue ? No, it is a Force resource. How bloody pathetic. Surely the management will not allow this, it is a waste of a resource and not efficient. No bloody chance. Working with you ? No. Working for you ? No.

On the subject of technology, I suppose, one day, they will have CCTV with speakers to replace officers on the streets. Oh, I see they already have in Middlesborough. How times change. "Camera, arrest that man."

Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Total Recall

I've just got over the surprise of reading this article,


and decided to calm myself with a bit of total-recall from a dim and distant past. Can anyone remember parading for duty at 15 minutes before the hour, actually stood in the briefing room whilst the Sgt carried out the briefing, told you what beat you would go out on foot patrol ? Out on patrol almost on the hour and then occasionally produce your appointments upon demand, at any time ? The pre-arranged RV's at a certain junction at a certain time to give the nod that all was well on your beat. Back in at 5 minutes before the booking off hour for a debrief and any handover information. Everything was done by the Sgts or through the Sgts, you never saw the Inspector unless you were in the cacky or had done something exceptional, and normally this was only expected as being part of the job. Bugger would always sign, time and date your PNB on the next free line. If anyone wanted to know anything about you they asked the Sgt. This figure of enormous power and respect who would bollock you for just about any small thing out of place but would defend you with his life if anyone else had the nerve to slag you off, one of his boys. The staff appraisals where the Sgt wrote about individuals, the kind of job they did, how individuals performed and the word of the Sgt was accepted, it was gospel. And they were always called Sergeant until you got over 5 years in and then it relaxed to Sarge because you had earned it. I can remember all of that. How things have changed.