Federation: Don't suffer in silence - financial support is available to colleagues
Inflation and the cost of living through steeply rising energy, food, fuel and other costs are creating real pressures on everyone - and the police are not exempt. Yet the police service pay for new recruits varies between barely over £20,000 to £24,000.
It is no surprise then that increasingly, as Federation Chief Executive, I am coming across instances of financial distress among colleagues, usually triggered by unexpected changes in personal circumstances.
Quite a few of our members, especially younger members, are feeling these new financial pressures and are initially reluctant to come forward. I would urge anyone not to sit stressing out but to seek financial advice or assistance in sorting out their problems.
The good news is help is available.
Both the Federation and CNC Welfare fund have been able to respond to requests for financial support and we would encourage people to get in touch if they need help.
It is my personal honour and privilege to be a director of the CNC Welfare Fund which offers financial assistance and support to subscribing members - both Police Officers and Police Staff. More information is available on both the Federation and Welfare Fund intranet pages.
There are also other options available like Number1 CopperPot and other financial advisory sources, and we are linked to several charities who can offer assistance.
Force Management is sensitive to the problem and is working with the Federation to establish a confidential financial services advice resource.
Also working with existing organisations like Police Mutual, we are hoping to provide talks and advice, to coach officers in financial services and investing in the future. It won't be a quick fix but it should help in the long run.
A more permanent fix would come through the Government accepting that police pay no longer reflects the nature of the job or the professional and personal commitment required to ensure the recruitment and the retention of good people.
As well as working closely with the Police Federation for England and Wales, which obviously has the numerical muscle when it comes to lobbying, especially on pay, our Federation is moving closer to a more formal liaison arrangement with the British Transport Police Federation and the Defence Police Federation.
The three specialist police services have much in common and can add a combined weight, speaking with one voice about the enduring injustice inflicted on our officers' pay packets.
But in the meantime, please take away one message from this Blog - ask for help if you need it. Don't struggle in silence.
Chief Executive CNPF
CNC Welfare Fund Director