Thursday, 17 September 2009


Posted as a reply to a post on Inspector Gadgets site

Drastic measures need to be introduced so that coppers can “get back to basics” and do the job they really want to do, lock up villains and protect the public.

All the flow chart based strategies and “flavour of the month” schemes may keep the SMT (Senior Management Teams) and they who must be obeyed at the Home Office behind their nice little desks, but they are a major distraction to the basics of what police officers join the job to do and what the public expects.

None of the blame for this state of our society lies at the door of the front line copper, who can only do their best with the tools they are given. The problem lies in the “empire building” culture from above. Politicians are the worlds worst for it and their influence is obvious as it cascades down the SMT ranks.

It’s the front line troops who end up having to face all the crap that these ideas and strategies create.

The challenge is dismantling the bureaucratic politically driven machine. If the front liners are not included in the process, the likely outcome will be an even greater more complex bureacratic machine to manage away the bureaucracy it was intended to eliminate! Let’s hope Jan Berry is possessed with enough common sense principles to stop the rot.

She has a mountain to climb in that she has the problems to solve quickly, and an interfering headline seeking Government to impede her progress.

In business, if a company takes its eye off the basics, it goes bump. Sooner or later, it is forced to address what distracts them from the core activity of generating cash and profit.

In a similar vein regarding police activity, the common thread seems to be to eliminate all distractions that keep officers away from what they do best and joined to do, to be out there on the street doing the basics. The rest is just distracting peripheral crap that adds liitle or no value.

The public don’t want to hear phoney headlines drawn from surveys, they want coppers out there, as much as possible, preventing crime and making their patch a safer place to be.

A certain amount of admin is necessary, but the duplicated effort, the pointless collection of unecessary data “just in case”, the time wasted on schemes and initiatives, and the excessive allocation of resources to non operational policing, seem to be a major distraction.

Public support will return slowly, when someone at a high level recognises the urgency of getting back to basics, stops the talking and planning, and makes it bloody well happen. When the public sees better responses, with the elimination of al the crap that gets in the way of justice being served AND seen to be served, there will be little or no need for further initiatives, surveys and the rest of the mintutae that is killing the job.

Off topic but all credit to Paul McGeever at the Federation for his letter to Gordon Brown yesterday about the Yvonne Fletcher/ Libyan trade deal debaucle. We posted support and a copy of his letter on this site where you can also see his letter to GB.

Crime Analyst Team
Nice 1 Limited


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