Monday, 26 April 2010

CRIME OF THE CENTURY - THE DECEPTION OF FALLING CRIME



It is time someone put the public straight about crime in the UK.

As expected, on the run up to the election, Nu Labour continue to perpetuate their conspiracy of deceit, that crime is falling faster than a stone thanks to their strategies.

A few days ago, the Times Online ran a piece entitled “Police record lower number of crimes than when Labour came to power in 1997”

In fairness to the Times, the article was balanced enough to make reference to the public mistrust of national crime statistics.

That mistrust is well founded.

Let us dispel the myths and state the facts so that the public can make up their own mind.
 “Alan Johnson, the Home Secretary, said that if there was to be an honest debate on crime the Conservatives should accept what repeated surveys all confirm: that crime has fallen and is still falling”.

 An honest debate Mr Johnson? . . . . Bring it on!   Only, let us decide what will be on the agenda . . . .

Explain to us how you can rely so heavily on a two tiered crime measurement system that contains such disparities. BCS in 2009 suggested 10 million crimes were committed, yet only 4.7million were reported to the police. The British Crime Survey every year reports that actual crime is more than double that reported, and in fact less than 40% of crime is reported due to lack of confidence in your system. Could it be that your reliance on the two tier system has more to do with the fact that it is far easier to manipulate volume crime such as we have witnessed with vehicle and damage incidents ?

Explain to us how, whilst on your parties watch, you can justify the complexity of two major changes in the way crime is recorded that have subsequently enabled crime statistics to be so easily fiddled. The Home Office Counting Rules [1989] expanded the number of crimes recorded by including a greater number of minor crimes. The National Crime Recording Standard [2002] sought to make the process of crime recording more victim oriented. The introduction of these changes rendering figures before and after their introduction incomparable.

Outline for us, why continue to mislead the public about crime going down, when in fact you have overseen so many changes to the recording process that encourage the downward distortion of the enormity of crime. Shall we provide you examples? Ok… where a house is broken into, car keys taken and the vehicle driven away, only one offence of burglary [no vehicle related crime] is recorded. Worse, let us say for example, a communal housing block is entered via one door, twenty flats are entered, twenty sets of car keys taken and twenty vehicles stolen. Twenty victims, forty crimes. Under your changes, only one offence of burglary is recorded. Frontline police officers tell us of their frustration of how they are being forced to enact your deceitful conspiracy, with many, many more similar examples on record.

Explain to us why so many thousands of matters remain reported merely as incidents and not captured under the recording of crime. Perhaps you would care to divulge to us the numbers of incidents that should have been upgraded to a crime thereby revealing a more accurate reflection of the volume of crime. We’re assuming you will either not deliver that information or ensure it is suitably doctored so it continues to conceal the nefarious activities endorsed by your Government.

Admit the facts, that your party claims of a “significant fall in crime over the last decade” are in fact a fallacious headline masking a web of conspiracy and deceit about the recording and reporting of crime. Concede the truth, that in real terms, much of the fluctuation in crime rate had more to do with a number of major changes in the way crime was recorded than any direct influence of the Labour Party. Admit that the reported decline in crime has more to do with something criminologists call “attrition”, opposed to any specific Labour strategy. This is reflected by a massive reduction in the reporting of crime by the public (British Crime Survey suggests that less than 40% of real crime is reported for various reasons).

Tell us why violent crime carried out by children and teenagers, for example, has increased by one-third over three years. Frontline police are clear why this is happening. Rather than concentrating on persistent and violent youth offenders, they are busy creating crime to your government orders. Minor crime is going on all the time. Police merely “pluck something out of the air”, searching the pockets of a student for cannabis, for example, in order to detect a crime and so fulfill targets. Explain how you justify as one police officer put it : “bringing more and more people to justice - but they are the wrong people.”

Perhaps you would enlighten us as to why you measure Police performance in 'sanction detections'? [The term used for offences detected or cleared by charging someone, issuing a PND (penalty notice) or giving them a caution if they will admit the offence, have no previous record and have not recently received a PND. In order to meet your targets, police are now classifying incidents as crimes that would previously have been dealt with informally, classified differently or ignored. Section 5 of the Public Order Act allows police to arrest anyone for 'threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour within the sight of a
person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress'. Before the arrival of sanction detections, the police only used Section 5 for a public order offence, but now that police can now claim a sanction detection for an arrest under Section 5, minor crime and even innocuous activities appear in a different light. Could it be that your record of one new offence for each day in Government has enabled you to criminalise society just so that you can report increased detections and falling crime? Or are we being cynical?

Let us ask you to astound us with your honesty and ask you to comment on this. The rising numbers of sanction detections give the impression that the police are waging an effective war against crime, but, as one officer interviewed put it: 'We are bringing more and more people to justice but they are the wrong people.' Like other targets, they measure what was chosen to be measured, by Chief Officers in collaboration with the Home Office, not whether the public are getting a good service. 'Arresting someone for sending an offensive text on their mobile phone after a domestic dispute gets a sanction detection. The painstaking, time-consuming work of tracking down a missing child does not. A child stealing a Mars bar earns the same detection as a murder. Murders obviously require a lot more police time than a Mars bar. Officers are now forced by Senior Officer strategies to get involved in police work that does not earn a target. "We put less effort into areas we are not judged on."'

You’re not off the hook yet Mr Johnson . . . Plenty more for you to be honest about if you dare. Sixty five over-40s are now ‘made a criminal’ each day, which is confirmed by your very own Government figures. The number of people who are over 50 and enter the criminal justice system for the first time increased by 46.3 percent between 2000/01 and 2007/08, from 16,400 to 24,000. Meanwhile in the 40-49 age group, there was a 57.4 per cent rise to 32,900. How do you justify the targets imposed by your Government that have resulted in the mass criminalisation of a generation? Your party have introduced a range of offences aimed at householders which can be dealt with through on-the-spot fines. In doing so, you have criminalised a generation and treated tens of thousands of law-abiding middle-aged and elderly citizens like villains. Again, there are thousands of examples as evidence of your mismanagement. 

Explain for us, how the prisons are bursting at the seams with offenders, with numbers increasing every month, insurers report daily about increasing property theft claim numbers, and yet crime is somehow decreasing. Where are the offences these increased numbers of prisoners have committed? At the same time detection rates are declining. How do you explain this with increased occupancy reaching the stage where you are committing millions to increasing the size of the prison estate? The public smell a rat Mr Johnson. The game is almost up.

Speaking of Gaming . . . . .

How can you permit, condone or encourage the practice of manipulating crime statistics, tacitly approved by senior officers, police watchdogs and your Office? The techniques – dubbed “gaming” – are used to create the illusion that fewer crimes are being committed and that a bigger proportion are being solved. These practices inflame the debate about crime statistics, anger the frontline officers ordered to implement them, and wipe out any remaining public confidence in crime statistics and your claims about reducing crime and increased detections.

The techniques which you are surely aware of include: “Cuffing” – in which officers make crimes disappear from official figures by either recording them as a “false report” or downgrading their seriousness. For example, a robbery in which a mobile phone is stolen with violence or threats of violence is recorded as “theft from the person”, which is not classed as a violent crime. “Stitching” – from “stitching up”, whereby offenders are charged with a crime when there is insufficient evidence. Police know that prosecutors will never proceed with the case but the crime appears in police records to have been “solved”. “Skewing” – when police activity is directed at easier-to-solve crimes to boost detection rates, at the expense of more serious offences such as sex crimes or child abuse. “Nodding” – where clear-up rates are boosted by persuading convicted offenders to admit to crimes they have not committed, in exchange for inducements such as a lower sentence.

The academics call this ‘gaming’ but front line police officers call it fiddling the figures, massaging the books or, the current favourite term, ‘good housekeeping’. It is a bit like the police activities that we all hoped had stopped in the 1970s.

Simon Reed, vice-chairman of the Police Federation, which represents front line officers, said: “This demonstrates that senior officers are directing and controlling widespread manipulation of crime figures. The public are misled, politicians can claim crime is falling and chief officers are rewarded with performance-related bonuses. 

Rank and file officers were told in 2002 that informal police warnings could no longer be counted as a detection for common assaults. Within 12 months the number of recorded common assaults dropped from 22,000 to 3,000 while thousands more crimes switched to the category “other woundings”. Such a rapid adjustment confirms the organisational nature of the practice and must contain co-ordination and direction by management.

The scale of the ‘gaming’ behaviours, is confirmed from disillusioned front line sources that senior officers are directly orchestrating the behaviour or turning a blind eye to it. You must be aware that other gaming techniques are still being used in forces across the country. The use of “stitching” is “significant”, while “cuffing” has continued after the introduction of Home Office rules which were supposed to guarantee and standardise the way crimes are recorded.

“Cuffing” can involve a situation where a victim of crime is accused of making a false crime report, and is therefore treated like a suspect rather than an injured party. Mr Johnson…. You cannot have members of the public who have been victims of crime coming to the police for help and being treated like suspects. That is not right and you are eroding confidence in the police by either condoning or supporting these practices. How can you continue to preach the gospel of increasing public confidence in the police whilst permitting these practices to continue?

And now we turn to what is perhaps the most serious crime of all . . . . . a crime that if ever revealed in its entirety, will surely eclipse the MP’s expenses scandal.

We have come to expect politicians to be economical with the truth, but when the integrity of our most senior police officers is called into question, with suspicions about conspiratorial and deceitful conduct, the time has come for a very public enquiry.

We have reported on this subject previously in our reports:-

http://thinbluelineuk.blogspot.com/2009/12/top-cops-pay-crime-scandal.html
http://thinbluelineuk.blogspot.com/2010/01/top-cops-are-still-fiddling-crime.html

FINALLY Mr Johnson, we would invite you to disclose the truth about the whole sordid affair of crime figure manipulation and the financial inducements paid to Senior Police Chiefs to perpetuate the conspiracy.

The orchestrators of this deceit are the Government and Home Office, aided and abetted by senior police officers, who are obscenely rewarded for their part in the plot.

Front line police officers are unable to untangle this web of deceit, despite protestations by many with an informed and accurate perspective at the public coal face. Distortion of the figures has led to misallocation of financial and human resources, resulting in the public being deprived of the policing it deserves. The gravy train of police funds has been milked and the “con” disguised through years of bureaucracy, performance targeting and distraction techniques, have made the task of basic policing more difficult to deliver.

There is plenty of evidence that there are senior officers who are paid grossly disproportionate salaries and bonuses for perpetuating the deceitful illusion of crime reduction.

The honour and distinction of achieving a high rank in public service has been replaced with greed, with a convenient blindness to the immorality of their actions.

A full, transparent 43 force public enquiry is needed to force the disclosure of these illicit payments and inducements to perpetuate the politicised myth of falling crime.

The consequences are dire and plain for all to see. The victims in all of this are the tax payer, who is deprived of the police service his contributions are intended to provide, and the front line police officer who is forced into silent acceptance and resignation of a job that has become enmeshed with bureaucracy, risk averse policing and fiddled crime figures. Who could blame officers that have no faith or respect for senior officers and politicians who orchestrate a criminal deception of the highest magnitude for personal gain, and then expect the staff on the ground to do their dirty work with no resistance?

The secrecy surrounding these payments serves only to feed suspicion of a boys’ club stitch-up. Chief constables need to be open on pay and perks if trust is to be restored, not only with the public, but also with the front line officers who also feel cheated. Respect for Chief Officers is at an all time low and we have to sympathise with the front line officers who feel they are doing the dirty work of the Chiefs, betraying the public trust and feeling pressured into compliance.

No one should be surprised to see the dramatic changes to the crime reporting processes that occurred during the Labour ministry. What a clever game of smoke and mirrors they have played. Obfuscate, disguise, confuse or even blatantly lie about the statistics to prevent the truth getting out to the public, that they have failed spectacularly to handle the problem honestly and effectively.

The wider public have been well and truly conned by Labour. The police rank and file have become embroiled in a tangled web of deceit. The challenge is a scary one, because it involves the unwinding of many years of conspiratorial, deceitful conduct. But change it must if we are to move forward.

Whoever assumes the mantle of Home Secretary will face many obstacles from the media and Labour, who will not want the truth revealed for fear of the damaging consequences. The fact is public confidence is shattered almost beyond recognition and it will take a supreme dose of courage and perseverance to take the necessary remedial action necessary to start healing the wounds that have been inflicted.

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Criminal Justice UK - The Police Part 2 - Reform of Police Governance


At first glance, it is difficult to understand why police performance is currently under such intense scrutiny and why a range of politicians, practitioners and commentators are calling for fundamental reform of the Police Service. Police recorded crime has fallen since 2007 and the criminal justice system brings more offenders to justice each year than ever before.

Challenges to today’s Police Service

The positives outlined above mask the emergence of genuine performance challenges in the Police Service. Decline in the number of crimes committed is marred by criticism that recorded crime is open to manipulation and distortion to produce politically favourable results. Gun crime and violent crimes are more common now than in the past. Offenders Brought to Justice (OBTJ) targets are increasingly being met through punishment of minor offences, for example with cautions for the possession of cannabis. Those from disadvantaged groups are disproportionately affected by crime – and this is the case now more than ever before.

While the police management have diverted their focus on reassuring the public, overall police productivity in terms of crime detection is flat: each warranted officer detected just 9 crimes per year in 2009, less than in 2001, and each current detection costs more in real terms than a detection in 2001. Such productivity issues may in part be due to low levels of morale within the Police Service, as evidence suggests that many frontline workers are struggling to cope with changes in their working environment imposed by Chief Officers and feel ill at ease with the target-based performance management framework. Another explanation lies in the fact that the crime landscape itself is changing with increasing rapidity: new criminal techniques and technologies combine with a fast changing distribution of crime types, and shifting public and political priorities requiring an ever more responsive police system.

The need for reform

The Government’s main response to these challenges has been to significantly increase spending on the police. Police resources have increased by over 25 per cent in real terms since 2001. However, such a response is no longer sustainable. The recent Home Office spending settlement dictates that police spending will have to remain at current levels at least until 2012. Simply pumping money into the policing system as it is currently configured appears to be producing limited and perhaps even decreasing returns. As a result, officials and commentators have started to look for other ways to improve performance and responsiveness.

One area that has been the focus of much public debate concerns the potential for a radical reconfiguration of police accountability and governance arrangements – with, for example, the Conservative Party proposing locally elected Police Chiefs as the primary change mechanism.

Labour’s approach to managing the police service over the last 10 years now needs to change dramatically if real reforms are to be seen. The Government’s policing strategy has been to spend more money on the police (increasing the number of police officers to record levels) and to drive up performance through the use of centrally imposed targets. This approach cannot continue. There is no more money to spend and the target regime reduced the ability of police forces to respond to changing local demands.

CHANGE STARTS AT THE TOP – WITH THE WAY FORCES ARE GOVERNED

None of these reforms can be progressed unless a wider set of problems are tackled that are caused by the way the police service is governed, organised and held to account. For true change to materialise at the front line, the primary focus must first be the reform of the current system of governance of the police service.

Unless the governance system itself is transformed, any substantive programme of reform will suffer the same fate as those that preceded it: opposition within different parts of the service followed by a government ‘U-turn’ for fear of a politically costly conflict with the police. The first reform priority therefore has to be to design a system of governance that is more coherent and less fragmented and that empowers local and national police leaders to deliver change in the public interest.

THE CURRENT SYSTEM OF GOVERNENCE IS FRAGMENTED

The structure of the police presents a block to necessary reform. The “tripartite model” – with power shared between the Home Secretary, Police Authorities and Chief Constables – means that Government does not have effective control over national policing priorities. The 43 forces are run as fiefdoms by their Chief Constables. To get things done, the Home Office resorts to bribing forces with sweeteners.

In perhaps the most critical report yet about the seats of power within the police service, we look in dept at the mechanics of ACPO [Association of Chief Police Officers], NPIA [National Police Improvement Agency] and APA [Association of Police Authorities].

This report pulls no punches. It takes a cold hard look at the three agencies, explores the contraversy that surrounds them and how their respective organisations have wasted and diverted tax payers money with profligate spending and misappropriate use of their powers.

Click here or any of the prior links to read or download the report.



For many senior police Chiefs, this will make uncomfortable reading. The time for passive acquiesence is passed. Reform is needed now and on the run up to the general election, with crime and policing in the public eye, there has never been a more appropriate time for this important subject to be placed under the spotlight. Change must start at the top. Improper practices must be rooted out from the top down if confidence is ultimately to be restored in this vital part of the criminal justice system.

In the report you will read how :-
  • ACPO conducts itself as an oligarchy, the  very opposite of democracy
  • The Home Secretary strikes deals with ACPO to exert political influence
  • Sir Hugh Orde is at odds with the Conservative viewpoint, saying police chiefs would resign rather than accept the Tory policy of elected police commissioners to hold forces to account. 
  • ACPO leaders give “political cover to the Labour Government repeatedly and consistently” ACPO officers engage in “gratuitous photocalls” with Gordon Brown and other ministers.
  • ACPO receives £18 million a year from the Home Office, publicly and privately lobbies against a number of key Conservative issues, going far beyond its role.
  • Despite claiming to be an independent body that acts in the public interest, analysis of its statements shows almost no criticism of the current Government.
  • ACPO accrued operational policing roles in counter-terrorism, civil emergencies, intelligence gathering and ports policing.
  • ACPO has created subsidiary companies providing criminal record checks, security advice and road safety training.
  • ACPO stands accused of “bankrolling a ‘gravy train’ of ex-police officers who retire with a substantial police pension and then take up either consultancy work or full-time employment with ACPO
  • Few understand that ACPO is a private company, funded by a Home Office grant and money from 44 police authorities.
  • Despite its important role in drafting and implementing policies that affect the fundamental freedoms of this country, ACPO has until recent changes been protected from freedom of information requests and its proceedings remain largely hidden from public view.
  • ACPO spent millions of pounds from the public purse meant for counter-terrorism work, on luxury London flats for senior officers.
  • Sells information from the Police National Computer for up to £70 - even though it pays just 60p to access the details.
  • ACPO pay & bonus scandal would overshadow the MP's expenses fiasco
  • Sir Hugh Orde stated that voters can’t be trusted. In an unbelievably patronising
    statement, he claimed that there are “no votes in protecting people from terrorism, from organised crime and from serial rapists that cross the co
    untry”.
  • Sir Hugh complained that the police would become "politicised", yet the group over which he presides has spent years behaving in a quasi-political way, making statements intended to support this government policy or undermine that one.
  • ACPO - rank officers can be found at Home Office press conferences and their
    comments are often helpfully attached to government press releases. They are up to their necks in politics.
  • Sir Hugh's intervention is itself overtly political. So it is a bit rich for him to complain about the politicisation of the police.
  • THe NPIA Chief Executive Peter Neyroud is the £195,000 a year boss of the Agency.
  • Mr Neyroud’s employment package includes a Westminster apartment — in a block that has a gym, pool, sauna and valet parking — within walking distance of the agency offices. It cost the taxpayer £23,200 in 2008-09.
  • As a perk of the job, the flat has an income tax demand of approximately £9,000 a year, which the NPIA confirmed it has paid for a number of years.
  • The NPIA is spends £19 million a year on consultants and recently employed an external contractor as its director of resources, paying him £296,000 — including accommodation costs — not a bad little number for seven months work.
  • The Agency senior managers have faced criticism before. They shared £82,000 in bonuses in 2008-09 and Peter Holland, its chairman, claimed £46,000 expenses in two years — including £2,800 on meals at the RAC Club in Pall Mall.
  • Mr Neyroud lives in Oxford, 45 miles from London. Oxford is within easy commuting distance.
  • 2032 staff 1258 permanent, 64 Home Office staff, 266 seconded officers, 444 temp contractors with staff costs of £101,211,000 (£91million 07/08)
  • They are owed £34,850,000 [most recent published accounts]
  • They owe £71,729,000
  • Cash in bank and at hand £5,245,000
  • Cash in bank/at hand same time 2008 £42,254,000
  • Fixed and current assets total £345million
  • Deducting liabilities, the balance sheet is positive to the tune of £257million
  • Total Costs £285,870,000
  • Total Income £49,784,000
  • Deficit -£236,086,000
  • A few months after stories about his lavish perks, and perhaps a few months before a new government reviews the existence of his fiefdom, Peter Neyroud has announced his intention to step down as chief executive of the NPIA
  • Within a day or so of Mr Neywoud announcing his departure, it can be no coincidence that he has chosen the same time to conduct a media interview in which he now urges the Government to agree to an independent examination of what it is the public requires of the police and the right structures to fulfill those requirements.
  • It appears somewhat strange that this interview is timed on the approach to an election where the balance of power may shift and his Quango may well come under closer critical scrutiny.
  • Within days of Peter Neyroud announcing his departure from the NPIA the Chairman, Peter Holland has now also announced that he will leave in September. All a bit convenient at best, suspiciously coincidental to say the least, to lose two key figures
    from the top of an organisation in the immediate aftermath of a General Election. Or perhaps they've been reading the runes and reckon that the quango's future is less than secure?
  • It seems that certain individuals within this gravy train culture are fearful that a Royal Commission or new Government might derail the train, reveal the secrets they would rather be kept from public view about waste and inappropriate spending and the disproportionate presence the bodies represent in the political system.
  • Mr Neyroud has recently given public support to Sir Hugh Orde's comments about policing needing a review. Hardly surprising, as we have noted from the NPIA website that Sir Hugh Orde, as well as being President of ACPO is also an NPIA Board Member.
  • Most police authorities are failing to set priorities for local forces and do not ensure value for money.
  • A joint investigation of ten authorities in England and Wales by the Audit Commission and the Inspectorate of Constabulary found only mixed performance, with the majority of authorities performing only adequately overall.
  • The ten authorities oversee £6bn of spending every year – or 44% – of the total annual policing budget, with one force, the Metropolitan Police Service, spending half of that sum. 
  • None of the nine received the top rating for value for money, with eight rated ‘adequate’. Two were rated ‘poor’ for their scrutiny of local policing.
  • Authorities are not yet demonstrating that they can respond to the many multifarious demands  that are placed on them. there is very little evidence even of police authorities performing well, let alone excellently.
National funding

The centralised model of police funding is a mess, eroding local accountability and inhibiting police forces from spending money where it would be most useful. It removes the incentive to spend effectively and efficiently, and denies local residents a say in how much they pay for their policing, and what its priorities should be.

Accountability

Striking the correct balance between efficiency and accountability is central to public service reform. Unlike other services such as health and education, which are consumed by individual patients or pupils, policing is a public good and not subject to choice as a method of providing accountability. Consumer power can therefore only be exercised through a popular election.

Local accountability

Political debate about crime in England and Wales has been restricted to point-scoring and blame games. The lack of accountability, and the need for politicians to be seen to be “doing something about crime” has created a culture of short-termism and knee-jerk reaction.

It has resulted in the trading of meaningless statistics, accusations of interference and seemingly limitless centrally-directed initiatives.

The answer must involve getting the government out of the job of policing. The politicisation of the force must be tackled, with the removal of targets, not merely the promise of it as it presently stands.

A local tax to pay for the basic command unit and a commander who is selected by and answerable to taxpayers, whether through local government or even direct elections, would give the public that power. It would certainly put an end to the dangerous politicisation of our police force and the continuing alienation of the public.

The existing tripartite model of Home Office, Chief Constable & Police Authority needs a thorough overhaul. In place since 1964, its continuing value and fitness for purpose must be questioned if true reform is to be achieved.

A NEW SYSTEM OF GOVERNANCE
 
Despite the difficulties and problems that exist within ACPO, the APA and NPIA, we would not dismiss the potential for providing real value to the tax payer. It seems that many of their responsibilities and purposes are blurred and overlap, are duplicated or contradict the ideal of a single focus.
 
To read the full report, see our conclusions and suggested recommendations click here

Thursday, 8 April 2010

UK IMMIGRATION 2010 - MORE UNCOMFORTABLE TRUTHS


98.5% OF 1.67 MILLION JOBS CREATED SINCE 1997 HAVE GONE TO A FOREIGNER

In an article due to appear in the Spectator magazine the emotive subject of migration has leapt to the top of the political agenda. Information from the Office for National Statistics reveals that of the 1,670,000 "jobs" created since Labour came to power, a staggering 1,645,000 (98.5%) have been taken by immigrants.

The Government has totally failed to deliver its pledge of 'British jobs for British workers'.

Shadow immigration minister Damian Green revealed unpublished figures showing there are almost 730,000 fewer British-born workers in the private sector than in 1997. But Mr Green said the official figures were 'the final proof that Gordon Brown was misleading the public when he promised British jobs for British workers'. He added: 'Instead he has presided over boom and bust and left British workers in a worse position than when he took office 13 years ago'.

Sir Andrew Green, of the Migrationwatch pressure group, said: 'The government's economic case for mass immigration is finally blown out of the water.'

See the media articles here, here and here.

To see our report : "UK Immigration 2010 - The Uncomfortable Truth" click here

To see: "Disgraceful Truth Of The Labour immigration Strategy" click here

In these reports we compiled the most recent statistics and revelations about how, since 1997, Labour have invoked a deliberate strategy to sling open the UK borders to foreign nationals on the basis that it would be good for the country.

CITIZENSHIP

Handing out passports to foreign nationals is how the Labour Government changed the make-up of society for ever. In 1997 just 37,010 people were given citizenship.

Last year the Home Office approved an all-time record 203,865 applications, an increase of 58 per cent in a year.

In total, Labour has now created 1.5million new British citizens - all with full voting rights.

It doesn't take rocket science to see that Labours motive was votes.

ASYLUM REMOVALS

Labour has never got to grips with the record number of asylum seekers pouring into the UK. Even on conservative estimates, it has left around 285,000 failed claimants living in Britain - but the number being removed is falling.

In 2009, there were 10,815 removals or voluntary departures, down 16 per cent on 2008.

Of those who went, 2,985 benefited from the Assisted Voluntary Return scheme - worth £3,000 each.

The Government's target of concluding 90 per cent of asylum cases within six months by December 2011 has been dismissed as 'unachievable' by Independent Chief Inspector of the UK Border Agency, John Vine.
Only a third of failed asylum seekers - 7,850 out of the 26,832 served with deportation notices - were actually removed in 2008. Inspectors have recently identified a new backlog of 40,000 cases massing in the asylum system.

THE DOCUMENT THEY DON’T WANT YOU TO SEE:

“We know they’re going to move asylum seekers in there. All the flats have been done up, central heating, the works. And they’ve put up brand new net curtains. That’s a sure sign.”


This is the kind of message voiced by angry locals all over Britain for the last couple of years. Many of the details change, but the total renovations and the highly visible net curtains crop up time and time again.


So too do the denials by local councils that the premises concerned are going to house asylum seekers. And almost as regular is the spectacle of those same councils being forced to eat their words within weeks as local residents wake up to find that new neighbours from Albania and Somalia have been moved in overnight.

The repetition of this pattern over the entire country has been something of a mystery up until now. Strangest of all has been the sight of so many councils telling lies to local residents and newspapers alike, even though the bureaucrats and local councillors telling the lies must know that they will be exposed and discredited.

Secret Tenancy Agreement
 
The answers to this puzzle lies in a secret 26-page document – the Revised Tenancy Agreement April 2001 – produced by the Secretary of State for the Home Office, acting through the Immigration and Nationality Directorate. Its very existence is supposed to be secret and has this warning for people or companies thinking of making money out of housing asylum seekers:

“The Landlord’s attention is drawn to the Official Secrets Acts 1911-1989. The landlord shall take all reasonable steps to ensure that all individuals engaged on any work in connection with this Agreement have notice that these statutory provisions apply to them and shall continue to apply after the expiry or termination of the Term.”

Detailed list of items for asylum seekers :-

So what doesn’t the Home Office want you to know?
 This list of requirements for any property being used to house asylum seekers begins, reasonably enough, by insisting that it shall be fit for human habitation, and have adequate light. Let us ignore the fact that many hundreds of thousands of our own people are either homeless or live in houses which are “unfit for human habitation” because, according to central government and local councils, there “isn’t enough money to deal with all the problems.”
 The agreement begins to lay out requirements which are beyond the reach not just of a relatively small number of the homeless or desperately poor:
 “… all meters shall be of the quarterly type, the use of card or key meters shall not be allowed.”
 Isn’t that nice? If you and your family fall into arrears on your utility bills, particularly electricity, you have to agree to the installation of a card meter set at such a rate that it gobbles up money. British families with children can’t be officially cut off – but if they run out of meter credit, their lights and heating go off anyway and they have to go to bed at dusk in the winter to try to keep warm. Such hardships are unacceptable, however, when it comes to asylum seekers.
 It continues... “The Property shall have a full and safe central heating system installed. Paraffin or bottled gas fed heating systems shall not be used.” Perish the thought! Such devices are fine for British pensioners and young families shivering on the poverty line, but far too smelly, inconvenient and dangerous for the liberal elite’s favourites.
 New electrical goods
 After laying down requirements on issues such as fire safety, the document states: “All electrical appliances in the Property shall be either new or, if second hand, shall be supplied complete with a twelve month guarantee.” Well, I don’t know about you, but many couples setting up home have to rely on hand-me-down electric cookers and heaters without any guarantee at all. And, of course, ordinary British youngsters moving into places of their own still face the same choice between paying through the nose for new equipment or going without guarantees.

The document goes on to provide a long list of the things needed in the kitchen, living room, bedrooms and bathroom of each asylum property. As you’re probably expecting by now, this features everything from chip pans to teaspoons, from an easy chair for each bed space to a Boots first aid kit.
 The long ‘General’ list in Section 1.13 of the document even proves that the popular observation about new net curtains showing that asylum seekers are moving in is true, since landlords are ordered to provide “net & drawable curtains to all living rooms and bedrooms.” They get everything, in fact, including the kitchen sink.


• Free colour TV and licence paid!


One item does, however, stand out:
 • “For Each Living/Dining Room 1 new twenty inch screen colour television complete with licence which shall be renewed at each annual anniversary of the Start Date throughout the Term.”

UK citizens have to wait until they are 75 to get a free TV licence, and non-payment of this iniquitous tax is the biggest single ‘crime’ that puts British women in prison.
 Many of those women can’t afford a TV licence because they are struggling to bring up young families on pitifully low incomes. As a result, they are also often unable to afford proper child safety equipment. No wonder, then, that the Home Office bureaucrats being so generous with our tax money wanted to keep this section secret:

“Where there are to be children living in the Property, the Property shall include:

• Adequate cot and highchair facilities;

• Appropriate sterilisation equipment;

• Child safety gates on all stairways;

• Childproof resistant devices or casement stays on all windows;

• Appropriate play areas both inside and outside the Property.”

Another thing that ordinary families on average incomes find a big problem is the occasional cost of major repairs. Asylum seekers have no such worries. Under this Agreement, the Landlord is bound to do all repairs within seven days, and to provide an emergency repair service “where a threat to health and safety is apparent.” The rest of us have to turn to Yellow Pages or pay for call out insurance, but it would be unfair to expect asylum seekers to do the same, wouldn’t it?

Similarly favourable treatment is also specified in the Letting Provisions, the appropriate section of which commits the Landlord “to redecorate all parts of the Property in the third year of the Term.” The rest of us may have to fork out down at “Do It All”, but not our special guests.

Perhaps most ludicrous of all, however, is the next section whereby the Landlord agrees: “To have the exterior of all windows of the Property cleaned once every twelve weeks.” I kid you not, it’s there.

Who pays?

So what do all these modcons and services cost the lucky occupants of such premises?

Nothing. Absolutely nothing. When various bleeding heart liberals tell us how asylum seekers only get basic income support payments, they don’t tell us about the Letting Provisions on page 4 of the Home Office’s Revised Tenancy Agreement, do they? Yet these show that not only do asylum seekers get their TV licences paid for them, we, the tax payer also pick up the tab for their rent, water rates, gas, and electricity bills.

Surely, you must think, these people must want to spend night after night on the phone to all their friends and family back home, telling them all about the wonders of Soft Touch Britain? A lot of their pocket money must go on paying the phone bill? No, as you probably guessed, they don’t have to pay a penny. Section 1 ((b) of the Letting Provisions sets out the fact that the Tenant Company (funded by the taxpayer) agrees to pick up the phone bill for every single property provided by the Landlord in question to asylum seekers.
 Don’t forget that every single council or housing association in this land which is housing asylum seekers has signed this document. Thousands of councillors in the ruling party in these councils have either read this document or studiously avoided seeing it so they didn’t have to.

A REMINDER OF THE COST OF IMMIGRATION IN THE UK


Influx of immigrants 'costs every UK household £350 a year'

Labour's 'open door' policy on immigration costs every household £350 a year, claims David Coleman, an Oxford University academic, who puts the total annual bill to the taxpayer at almost £8.8billion.

In a submission to a House of Lords committee, he said there had been an 'absent-minded commitment' to increase the population by one million every five years.
 Professor Coleman, an internationally respected population expert, said the costs of immigration are likely to increase if, as according to Government figures, immigration continues to swell the population at its present rate.
 
'The absent-minded commitment into which we have drifted, to house a further 15million people - one million every five years - must be the biggest unintended consequence of government policy-of almost any century,' he said.

'There are no merits in the promotion of population growth itself and many reasons to regret it, especially in a country as crowded as the United Kingdom.'


Professor Coleman said the costs to the public sector include £1.5billion to run the asylum system, £280million to teach English to migrants and at least £330million to treat illnesses such as HIV.

Immigrant communities are over-represented in the criminal justice system, he added. Mass immigration also imposes 'congestion costs, diverts investment to new infrastructure and housing, impinges on space and amenity and accelerates the output of waste and greenhouse gas emissions.'

THE EFFECT OF IMMIGRATION ON THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM



Crime related costs, at £4Billion is by far the largest cost attributable to immigration.

In recent years the British people have been increasingly denied their democratic rights. On issue after issue, the views of the majority of British people have been ignored and overridden by politically correct elite with its own agenda. All this in a country that invented modern Parliamentary democracy.

For all the reasons we have detailed on these pages, surely the time is long overdue for urgent steps to halt the damaging effects of immigration in the UK.

The problem of immigration has nothing to do with race, creed or culture.
It has everything to do with overcrowding and a politically motivated attempt by ministers to transform the fundamental make-up and identity of this country. The Government immigration strategy of ethnic cleansing was devised and implemented with the deliberate intention to destroy the right of the British people to live in a society defined by a common history, religion, law, language and traditions.

It was done to destroy what it means to be culturally British and to put another 'multicultural' identity in its place for devisive political gain. And it was done without telling or asking the British people whether they wanted their country and their culture to be transformed in this way.

For years we have watched as our country's landscape has been transformed out of all recognition - and politicians from have told us that it isn't happening and that we are racist bigots to object even if it is.

A measure of immigration and cultural diversity is indeed good for a country. Sadly, the immigration strategy of the Labour Government had nothing to do with enhancing British culture and society by broadening the mix. It was implemented for perverse political reasons that risk the destruction of its defining character altogether.

Other countries would not tolerate millions of immigrants taking over their society and miminising the value of its tradition, heritage and culture. Japan would not do it; China would not do it; India would not do it; Pakistan would not do it – so why should Britain?

Whichever party wins the election on May 6th, they must do something urgently and stop pretending this isn't now a major problem that will have catastrophic consequences for the nation if left unchecked.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

CRIMINAL JUSTICE UK - THE POLICE PART 1


Some lessons have to be learned the hard and expensive way.

Only last week, the Advertising Standards Authority told the Home Office that its television adverts highlighting the government's "policing pledge" that neighbourhood officers can now be expected to spend 80% of their time on the beat is to be banned with immediate effect.

The ASA says that the television ad breaches its "legal, decent, honest, truthful" code because it is misleading on at least three counts.

The ASA said the ad was misleading because while it said that 80% of officers' time would be spent "on the beat", it did not make it clear this included duties other than patrolling the streets.

It also said the ad did not make it sufficiently clear that the pledge doesn't apply to all 140,000 police officers in England and Wales, but only the 13,500 neighbourhood constables and 16,000 community support officers in neighbourhood policing teams.

The announcement from the ASA coincides with a report we have been compiling on "Why Public Confidence In The Police is so low", looking at the various components of the UK Criminal Justice System.

The full report will shortly be uploaded to the see our reports section in the sidebar.

Meanwhile, here are a few extracts . . . .

WHY CONFIDENCE IN THE POLICE IS ALL BUT LOST
Never has the police service had so much money, so many officers or such access to technology. Yet never has public dissatisfaction with the police been so widespread. Complaints against the police have doubled in the past three years. This big increase, according to the Independent Police Complaints Commission, is due to allegations from law-abiding, middle-class, middle-aged and retired people. These traditional supporters of the police have never felt so let down.

A Home Office report, considered the most authoritative in the country, shows a huge gap between how we want to be policed, how the front line police want to police us and how we are actually policed. Why is there this gap and what can be done about it?

The UK public lacks the power to get the policing they want. Neither the public, their democratically elected local counselors nor their MP have any influence over the strategy of their local force, its funding or the appointment or removal of its Chief Constable. If the chief constable wants to close police stations against the wishes of the community, he can do so. If he wants his response teams to spend the day chasing detections, there is little to stop him.

Since the Police Act 1964 successive government have accrued power to the centre. Law and order is a hot political issue. The government cannot be seen to fail. As in the NHS it exerts control through targets. Just as in the NHS these targets are often poorly thought out and measure the wrong things. The government tolerates dodgy data for political ends and coerces otherwise ethical public servants into unethical behaviour. Most of all, it stops the police giving the public the policing they want.

Government targets before serving the public
The British police force has been made to put government targets before serving the public. These targets, set by the Home Office, result in bonuses of between £5,000 and £15,000 to top officers whose forces meet them, with the predictable result that officers lower down the scale come under pressure to concentrate on whatever is targeted, to the neglect of other things.

Police performance is measured in 'sanction detections', a term for offences detected or cleared by charging someone, issuing a PND (penalty notice) or giving them a caution if they will admit the offence, have no previous record and have not recently received a PND. In order to meet targets, police are now classifying incidents as crimes that would previously have been dealt with informally, classified differently or ignored.

Rising numbers of sanction detections give the impression that the police are waging an effective war against crime, but, as one officer interviewed put it: 'We are bringing more and more people to justice but they are the wrong people.' Like other targets, they measure what was chosen to be measured, by Chief Officers in collaboration with the Home Office, not whether the public are getting a good service.

The volume of crime each officer has to deal with is overwhelming, with response teams (i.e. the officers who respond to calls for assistance) often depleted to extremely low levels. In response to ever-more government initiatives, officers are called off to specialist units - immigration, asset recovery, the Olympics - leaving fewer to deal with calls for help from the public.

The police also complain that, when they do catch offenders, many escape with an NFA - no further action - because the Crown Prosecution Service, with targets of its own to achieve in terms of successful prosecutions, is unwilling to proceed with cases that are not watertight.

Who is to blame?
Sixty five over-40s are now ‘made a criminal’ each day, Government figures show.

The number of people who are over 50 and enter the criminal justice system for the first time increased by 46.3 percent between 2000/01 and 2007/08, from 16,400 to 24,000. Meanwhile in the 40-49 age group, there was a 57.4 per cent rise to 32,900.

Incidents which would once have been ignored are now treated as crimes. Complaints against the police have risen, with much of the increase coming from law-abiding, middle class, middle-aged and retired people who no longer feel the police are on their side.

A Home Office spokesman said: “We have removed all but one centrally-set target for police, to increase public confidence that the police and local councils are tackling the anti-social behaviour and crime issues that matter most locally.

“Together with the introduction of the Policing Pledge, we have ensured that the police are no longer driven by meeting multiple national targets but by listening to the public, identifying and tackling local priorities”.

Even this statement has proven to be an embarrassment to the Government.

The Policing Pledge – More False Expectations
The £3.5million wasted on advertising the policing pledge would have been better spend on employing 100+ front line police officers.

Gordon Brown, in his crime speech earlier this month, set out what he described as "new neighbourhood policing strategy" which includes the pledge for neighbourhood police to spend 80% of their time on the beat, a response to non-emergency issues within 24 hours and a public right to monthly beat meetings to discuss priorities.

Although all 43 forces in England and Wales signed up more than 15 months ago to the pledge, Her Majesty's Inspector of Constabulary, published a report recently, showing that 35 were falling short of the required standard. Some forces are not even monitoring the amount of time officers spend "working visibly" in their neighbourhoods.

In our report, we have taken the most recent information from forces dated March 2010, which confirms that only 8 of the 43 forces attained a “Good” overall standard regarding their performance on the pledge, with two of the forces graded as “Poor”.

It can be seen that for the relevant pledge point, (3) relating to the 80% visibility on the street, only 14 of the forces attained a “Good” grade, with two forces, Nottinghamshire and West Midlands being graded as “poor”.

The Policing Pledge is a waste of time and tax payers money and should be scrapped. Thousands of police man hours are spent completing audit returns and compiling results, in a misguided effort to persuade the public that they should have confidence in the police. Bureaucratic projects like the pledge tie officers up in administrative duties. If they were put back on the street, public confidence will start to return.


It can be seen that for the relevant pledge point, relating to the 80% visibility on the street, only 14 of the forces attained a “Good” grade, with two forces, Nottinghamshire and West Midlands being graded as “poor”.

As if there weren’t enough examples of Chief Police Officer attitude likely to erode public confidence, the story that follows is one of the most disgraceful yet.
 
A police force won an award for its handling of the case of a schoolgirl knocked down and killed by a speeding officer after nominating itself.

Hayley Adamson, 16, was killed when a speeding patrol car with no blue light or sirens on smashed into her in May 2008. The driver, PC John Dougal, was jailed for three years after being convicted of driving at 94 mph moments before he ploughed into her in the late-night tragedy.

The family of Hayley Adamson, 16, have reacted with anger that Northumbria Police put themselves forward for the prize after the horrifying smash.

Hayley’s mother Yvonne Adamson, branded the move as ‘sick’. Mrs Adamson said:
“It’s a complete joke. I can’t believe they have nominated themselves for the award. ‘What about all the complaints that were put in against them when it happened? ‘Life is truly hell. This is an insult to her memory. Tomorrow would have been Hayley’s 18th birthday. ‘It’s just a massive shock. It couldn’t have come at a worse time for the family.”

Less from Whitehall, more from local communities
This report deals with some of the more prominent reasons why the majority of the British public have lost faith and confidence in the modern police service.

Many Senior Police Chiefs are totally out of touch with the public and the front line officers. They have become adept at paying lip-service to what the public really want from their police service, then blame the same front liners when their latest schemes and fad projects fail to deliver. More time is spent telephoning members of the public to complete so called satisfaction questionnaires and then auditing the responses, than is spent delivering the service that is really needed.

At the most senior level, as we have reported previously, the police service fiddles crime and detection figures in the attempt to con the public that their force is performing well. Worse, along with the latest fad projects, they get the front line officers to implement their strategies. Chief Officers have, despite protestations to the contrary, shown themselves incapable of distancing themselves from political influence. The picture becomes somewhat seedy when Chief Officers are paid lucrative incentive bonuses to reflect decreases in crime and increases ig offences brought to justice.

The government cannot be seen to fail, yet with policing it clearly has. Working with Home Office sanction, Chief Officers are more concerned with performance targets than frontline requirements to deliver real policing. Like the health service, the Home Office, exerts control over the police through targets. These targets are often poorly thought out and measure the wrong things.

The government tolerates dodgy data for political ends and coerces otherwise ethical public servants into unethical behaviour. Most of all, it stops the police giving the public the policing they want. There has been a notable shift with this Government towards a more financially-oriented set of concerns about policing. Increasingly, they use financial and performance management and audit techniques to steer police services.

Policing priorities are inherently “political”. Citizens have particular concerns about crime and they elect politicians who claim that they will address those concerns. However the lack of a clear sense of the division of responsibility between politicians and the police creates confusion and prevents genuine accountability. Police Chiefs’ day-to-day decisions are hampered by central targets determining whom to hire and fire, which crimes to prioritise, and how much time officers must spend on any particular task. Meanwhile politicians struggle to grip the strategic priorities which are heavily guarded by ACPO.

The proliferation of targeting and central control prevents Chief Constables from exerting influence where it really matters. Unable to direct policing strategy and improve the effectiveness of their officers, they focus on those relatively trivial issues and “pet projects” over which they do have discretion. There are numerous instances of Chief Constables’ micro-management. One example is uniform. Each force determines the uniform components its officers wear; one Chief will veto tunics on the grounds that they are impractical and not waterproof, whilst another will ban fleeces for not being smart or traditional.

Senior officers are heavily involved in politics
Whilst it is generally accepted that there is little outright corruption in the UK, there is evidence that senior police officers spend time trying to influence politics and politicians spend time trying to alter police priorities. Decisions on policing strategy go through ACPO committees. One high-profile example of political involvement was the former Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir Ian Blair, who campaigned publicly in favour of the Government’s plans to introduce identity cards and to allow detention without charge for 42 days. The result of this was an erosion of trust and the widespread questioning of Sir Ian’s independence.

Tripartite risk sharing
Accountability is diluted by the tripartite structure of police governance, which shares risk and blame across three parties: the Home Office, Police Authorities and Chief Constables. ACPO’s role in it is akin to the British Medical Association being part responsible for the running of the health service or the Association of Head Teachers approving education plans.

ACPO’s blurred purpose and responsibility does not help. ACPO advises government, it sets policing policy, it campaigns for increased police powers, and now we learn it is engaged in commercial activities – all with a rather shady lack of accountability. ACPO’s incorporation as a private company shields it from accountability, for example through the Freedom of Information Act.

ACPO – the power behind the throne
The Association of Chief Police Officers is a powerful and independent body consisting of Chief Constables, Deputy Chief Constables and Assistant Chief Constables. It has a major role as the primary coordinator of policing policy, encouraging the 43 forces in England and Wales to adopt the policies it promotes.

ACPO has been described as a “self-perpetuating oligarchy” Chris Grayling, the Shadow Home Secretary, commented:
“It is strange that the Policing and Crime Bill gives ACPO a statutory position in advising on appointments when the status of ACPO itself remains undefined. Is it an external reference group for Home Office Ministers, or a professional association protecting senior officers’ interests? Is it a national policing agency, or is it a pressure group arguing for greater police powers?”

ACPO has the ear of the Home Secretary and this, in combination with its influence over senior officers (and those wishing to become senior officers), means it is a prominent voice in determining policy.

There is a widespread belief that ACPO is the main party persuading forces to adopt particular policies. If the Home Secretary wants to ensure the adoption of a policy idea, he will “strike a bargain” with ACPO to ensure its implementation. ACPO is the driving force behind policy, and the Home Office succumbs, either because of its own autocratic instincts or because the police are exceptionally good at pushing through the things they want.

This focus of ACPO on national policy means that individual Chief Constables are left focusing on administrative matters and equipment choices. In fact this situation should be reversed: ACPO could take a useful national lead on administration and interoperability while Chief Constables focus on their forces’ operations.

Local accountability
Political debate about crime in England and Wales has been restricted to point-scoring and blame games.
The lack of accountability, and the need for politicians to be seen to be “doing something about crime” has created a culture of short-termism and knee-jerk reaction. It has resulted in the trading of meaningless statistics, accusations of interference and seemingly limitless centrally-directed initiatives.

One Chief Constable reported that he is accountable to “at least a dozen” authorities, with three – HMIC, the Police Authority and the Audit Commission – responsible for inspecting and auditing his force. But accountability to many bodies actually means no accountability at all.

Giving local officers real autonomy and the power to make their own professional decisions, rather than relying on Whitehall edicts, would start to rebuild the relationship between the police and local people.

The answer must involve getting the government out of the job of policing.

The politicisation of the force must be tackled, with the removal of targets, not merely the promise of it as it presently stands.

A local tax to pay for the basic command unit and a commander who is selected by and answerable to taxpayers, whether through local government or even direct elections, would give the public that power. It would certainly put an end to the dangerous politicisation of our police force and the continuing alienation of the public.

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