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We have no confidence in Priti Patel, says Police Federation | Police

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Rank-and-file law enforcement officials have overwhelmingly supported a vote of no confidence in the house secretary, Priti Patel, the primary such transfer in greater than a decade.

In a scathing announcement, the Police Federation of England and Wales (PFEW), which represents 130,000 officers, stated Patel and the federal government “could not be trusted” and warned “warm words were not enough”.

The transfer comes after Wednesday’s affirmation that officers incomes £24,000 or extra could be hit by a pay freeze in 2021-22.

The PFEW’s nationwide chair, John Apter, stated: “As the organisation that represents more than 130,000 police officers, I can say quite categorically – we have no confidence in the current home secretary. I cannot look my colleagues in the eye and do nothing.”

Patel has tried to place herself as a champion for the police, declaring in her 2019 Conservative celebration convention speech that the Tories had taken “their rightful place as the party of law and order in Britain once again” and pledging to offer police the powers they should deal with crime.

The prime minister, Boris Johnson, positioned policing on the coronary heart of his campaigning earlier than the final common election, pledging to recruit 20,000 law enforcement officials in addition to increasing cease and search powers and rising sentences for assaulting law enforcement officials.

Johnson and Patel tried to courtroom the Police Federation with supportive appearances on the physique’s annual convention.

But after the federal government’s pay announcement on Wednesday, the Police Federation convened a rare assembly of its nationwide council, comprising the chair and secretary of every of the 43 power branches, the place a vote of no confidence in Patel was carried.

It is known to be the primary time the PFEW has supported a vote of no confidence in a house secretary since 2007 for Labour’s Jacqui Smith, over her determination to not backdate a 2.5% pay rise.

This week in addition they voted to withdraw their help for the Police Remuneration Review Body course of for police officer pay.

Apter added: “We often hear the home secretary praise police officers, but our members are so angry with this government. They have been on the frontline of this pandemic for 18 months and will now see other public services given pay increases while they receive nothing.

“At the beginning of this pandemic they endured PPE shortages and were not even prioritised for the vaccination. They continue to be politicised and this pay announcement is the final straw.”

The federation stated with inflation more likely to improve to virtually 4% later this yr, the pay freeze was a real-terms pay reduce for law enforcement officials. In an announcement, it stated Patel and the federal government “cannot be trusted or taken at face value in the way we would expect”.

“As the undisputed voice of policing we say this to the home secretary: you cannot pat our members on the back for their heroic efforts with one hand, while effectively taking their pay with the other,” the federation stated. “Warm words are no longer enough.”

Nick Thomas-Symonds, the shadow house secretary, stated the vote of no confidence was an “extraordinary step”. “This is a devastating blow for a hapless home secretary,” he stated.

The Home Office was contacted for remark.

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