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Nottingham Post
Nottingham Post
Olimpia Zagnat

89 percent of Nottinghamshire Police officers 'do not feel respected by Government', new report reveals

Up to 89 percent of the Nottinghamshire Police do not feel respected by the Government, a new report has revealed. Findings from the Police Federation’s 2022 pay and morale survey, which were published on January 11, also show almost one in five officers in Nottinghamshire Police who responded said they were planning to leave the service.

It has also revealed that just over half of the respondents would not recommend joining the police to others, while 66 percent said they did not feel valued within the police service. More than 40 percent found their job very or extremely stressful - and 84 percent have experienced feelings of stress, low mood, anxiety, or other difficulties with their health and wellbeing over the last 12 months.

Some 72 percent of Nottinghamshire officers felt morale across the Force was low or very low, compared to a national average of 87 percent. The Force with the highest number of officers with low or very low personal morale was Dorset Police with a figure approaching 70 percent.

READ MORE: Nottinghamshire detectives launch investigation after serious sexual assault on girl

Nottinghamshire Police Federation chair Simon Riley said he was disappointed only 119 members took part in the survey - which represents a response rate of around five percent. But he added: “That said, having gone through the Notts report it is broadly similar in responses to the national report and I am as happy as I can be that it is fairly representative of the mood of the membership.”

The Police Federation reported that pay remains the biggest cause of concern among police officers across England and Wales and Nottinghamshire is no different. The survey revealed that 77 percent of respondents from the Force said they were either dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with their overall remuneration including basic pay and allowances

Almost all respondents - 97 percent - reported that their cost of living had increased in the last month, with an increase in the price of their food shop being the most cited reason, and nearly nine out of ten felt they were worse off financially than they were five years ago.

The survey found 15 percent of respondents never or almost never had enough money to cover all their essentials. Almost one in five said they planned to quit the Force ‘within the next two years or as soon as they could’ with the most frequently cited reasons being morale, the impact of the job on their mental health and wellbeing and the impact of the job on their family and personal life.

Mr Riley added: “The survey has once again highlighted the levels of dissatisfaction at police pay and the way our members feel they are treated by the Government. Other public sector workers have started taking industrial action to make clear their position on pay and conditions but police officers are not allowed to do that so it is essential that the findings from this latest survey are taken seriously and our members’ concerns are addressed.

“Police officers want to be fairly rewarded for the difficult, stressful jobs they do and they also want to feel respected for the sacrifices they make and risks they take in the line of duty and no one should feel that is too much to ask for. None of us became police officers to get rich but the idea that some of our members are struggling to make ends meet is unacceptable so police pay and conditions must be dealt with as a matter of urgency.”

A Home Office spokesperson said: "Policing is a career like no other and we need officers to keep communities safe and cut crime. We recognise the impact of the cost of living, which is why we accepted in full the Police Remuneration Review Body’s recommendation to award a consolidated increase of £1,900 to all ranks of police officers.

“The government remains on track to deliver its pledge to recruit 20,000 police officers by March 2023. The overwhelming majority of new recruits recently surveyed report positive job satisfaction and want to remain officers for the rest of their working lives."

Inspector Paul Shortt, of Nottinghamshire Police’s People Services team, has described policing as a rewarding career, adding: “Some people may find that the reality of the role, with all the challenges and demands it brings, asks too much of them and their families. Recruiting higher numbers inevitably means that more people will, after having had the opportunity to experience the role, decide that it is not for them and leave the service. As with all careers, some people move on rather than enjoying a lifelong career in policing, but the numbers of people leaving before retirement age is relatively low."

He added that the force's noting officer ranks in Nottinghamshire are at their "highest levels in over a decade following the Police Uplift programme". The force now has 2,448 officers, which equates to an additional 427 officers serving on the frontline compared to 2019 when Uplift was introduced.

This means, Inspector Shortt said, that Nottinghamshire Police is able to put more officers on the streets, giving a better service to the public in the county. He added: "Pay is a national issue which cannot be directly influenced by individual forces. We also recognise that staff in other public sectors, and many in the private sector are in a similar position and that this challenge is not unique to policing.”


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