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Everything posted by oldcopper

  1. oldcopper

    Walk The Beat

    When I joined, over 50 years ago, almost every operational constable walked the beat; there were relatively very few cars then. In my force there existed a well tried system whose object was to keep as many officers on the beat as possible, To this end, bureaucracy was kept to a minimum and I can remember making multiple arrests during the course of a shift but still found time to patrol my beat, speak to people and generally be seen to be out and about. This situation gradually changed during my service and while I think we gained some advantages of being more mobile I also feel we lost something in the process. As a sgt and inspector I always tried to have constables on foot patrol but quite often, because of the volume of calls, I had to call them back to the station and instruct them to take out a car. As time has progressed I think more people became likely to telephone the police to complain about minor matters than in previous years and I suspect the increase in telephone ownership has contributed to this. From what I hear nowadays, and have experienced myself, it would appear the police just ignore many of the requests for police attendance. However, times change and I have doubts about whether we will see a return to a more personal approach to policing. We just have to make the best of what we have.
  2. oldcopper

    Manchester attack

    We are told to celebrate diversity and multi-culturalism and these issues do, indeed, have positive aspects, but there is also a downside. When a country has a significant number of individuals within its boundaries who were born abroad (or whose immediate ancestors come into that category) and have a different culture, religion, and ideology there is always a potential risk that these individuals will have split loyalties, or no loyalties whatsoever, to the host country. This is particularly the case if these individuals harbour some type of grudge (real or imagined) against the host country. I think it apparent that we have such a situation in the UK now and although the vast majority of immigrants and persons whose ethnicity is not British will probably not fall into this category I believe there are certain segments who do and pose a continuing threat if actions similar to those outlined by OAH are not brought into being. I believe we are destined to have years of continued terrorist acts in the UK but we could perhaps reduce the number of these incidents if we took decisive action now. If the sheer numbers of persons of interest to our Security Services in respect of suspect terrorist activity, of whatever type, are to be believed then we have a situation that our current methods of monitoring and policing cannot realistically deal with.
  3. oldcopper

    The general election (June 2017)

    Apart from being a fox I am, or have been, all of these things at some time and still intend casting my vote for Mrs May. During the earlier ppart of my life I that I would be ill, cold or a pensioner at some time in the future (if I lived) and took whatever actions I could to prepare for those eventualities and a major part of that waqs getting my priorities in the correct order. As a resident of the UK I feel fortunate that I was born here and not in a great many other countries I could mention. This country is not perfect but it is streets ahead of most others and I hope we can keep it that way. But thus far you have not justified why all pensioners, regardless of their financial status, should receive Winter Fuel Allowance, an issue you mentioned in a previois post. I would be interested to hear your logic on this.
  4. oldcopper

    The general election (June 2017)

    You are completely wrong. I am not in the least against those who genuinely suffer from fuel poverty and have difficulty paying heating bills receiving Winter Fuel Allowance. What I do oppose is the payment of this allowance to those perfectly able to pay it without recourse to the benefit system and I would suggest that a significant number of recipients of this allowance are (like me) well able to pay their own way. So the many you refer to who are ``not alright through no fault of their own'' would continue to receive the allowance and the Benefits System would actually be able to pay them an increase in the amount of allowance they receive due to those who do not need it having the allowance withdrawn. What can possibly be wrong with that? Unfortunately, our Benefits System has become a gravy train which a significant number of the population feel it is OK to dip into (if they get the opportunity) even when they have no genuine need of the assistance. It is a `fill your boots' mentality. Politicians of all hues have contributed to this situation by giving bribes to the electorate which are politically difficult to withdraw when they become unsustainable or when it is recognised that they may be inappropriate in certain cases.
  5. oldcopper

    The general election (June 2017)

    These individuals represent everything this country does not need and I do not trust either of them. Quite apart from the economy I remind myself of how they both supported the IRA and continue to refuse to condemn terrorism.
  6. oldcopper

    The general election (June 2017)

    I live in Scotland and because of that I will not have to experience the issues you list but even if I had to I would still cast my vote for the Conservatives at the forthcoming General Election. We pensioners have been rather fortunate these past few years and I understand the State Pension has increased by something like 25% in recent times. Due to an increasingly aging population, the generous triple lock on State Pensions is fast becoming unsustainable but even when it is withdrawn there will still exist a double lock to provide a fair measure of protection against inflation etc. So far as Winter Fuel Allowance is concerned, do you really think that someone like me whose various pensions and investments net him in excess of £40,000 p.a. should require assistance from public funds to pay their fuel bills? How can this be justified? I would like to see Winter Fuel Allowance confined to those who are found to be in genuine fuel poverty. I know several pensioners who drink, smoke, run expensive cars, gamble and go on frequent cruises and foreign holidays and still receive Winter Fuel Allowance. Some of them are not even in the UK for much of the cold weather. And what about those UK pensioners who live permanently abroad in warm countries? Why should any of them receive this Allowance? Some of them say, ``But we paid into it all our working lives.'' Fair comment, but surely you should only receive a benefit if you are in a situation that benefit was introduced to alleviate. We don't receive unemployment benefit unless we are unemployed and we don't receive child benefit unless we have children. So surely it follows that we should not receive disbursements from public funds unless we are truly unable to pay our fuel bills. I think Mrs May is a realist and is not sticking her head in the sand when it comes to looking at the financial problems an aging population will surely bring about. We could do with more like her.
  7. oldcopper

    Notice period to resign

    My sentiments exactly but in my experience there appears to be a decreasing number of officers who care much about their pensions or think about maters in the long term. Several I have spoken to a quite candid about the fact that they will probably not stay the distance to qualify for a pension and only entered the Police Service with a view to adding to their CV before moving on to another form of employment. I suspect some other occupations have the same problem and believe that an increasing number of people, mainly in the younger generation, take a short term view of life. Just a sign of the times I suspect.
  8. oldcopper

    Notice period to resign

    I remember a PC in a Scottish force doing that some years ago and a warrant was issued for his arrest under the Police (Scotland) Act for being AWOL. He was eventually arrested and brought back under escort. I seem to recollect that he was fined by a court and then dismissed by his chief constable. I expect similar legislation exists in England and Wales.
  9. oldcopper

    Bye bye UKIP

    No doubt they will go when they think they should and not before. I think that when the the Labour Party was created many years ago there was a need for it but in recent times it has been more of a burden to the progress and well being of the UK. However, thousands of people still believe in it and it has as much right to continue as any other party.
  10. oldcopper

    Bye bye UKIP

    You are too kind Zulu. They are making a mess of everything. They more or less admit this but Sturgeon has said that `Independence' transcends all other factors.
  11. oldcopper

    Bye bye UKIP

    Probably not, although I would expect that their numbers would decrease. Their core support contains a significant number of fanatics who whose sole desire is to see the break-up of the UK no matter what that entails and how detrimental that would be for Scots or any of the other peoples who inhabit these Islands. In recent years the SNP has seen its numbers swell due to a large number of Labour Party supporters who finally realised that Labour was not going to create the Socialist Utopia they once promised. You know the one I mean, it's the place where no one can order you about, everything is free, you don't need to work for a laving and all members of the `boss class' have been eradicated. Eventually, these class warriors will realise that the SNP are unable to provide such a Utopia and this will cause a dilema for them with regard to who they should vote for. God knows what they will do then.,
  12. oldcopper

    Bye bye UKIP

    While I agree that UKIP has, in the main, achieved the purpose for which it was created the fact is that many of those who voted for it did so because they felt the other mainstream political parties were not representing their views which were fairly widely held within the UK electorate, even by some individuals who vote3d for other parties. Those former UKIP voters who will now vote for other political parties will still carry the views and opinions into whichever party they may decide to vote for now and this should, hopefully, carry some weight. However. for those who continue to vote UKIP, and wish that party to continue in existence, I say ``Good luck.'' UKIP has as much right to exist as any other political party and those who choose to vote for it have the right to have a party which truly represents their opinion.
  13. oldcopper

    Bye bye UKIP

    To a great extent I think you are correct but at the end of the day it has to be said that UKIP has been a success story in that they were at the forefront of propelling the UK towards taking the necessary action leading to us leaving the EU. I voted for UKIP and if the same circumstances prevailed i would do so again. It served its purpose and I am grateful for those who created it and worked for its principal end purpose. I shall not do as I have always done and vote for whichever political party I feel is most likely to be best for the UK and at the moment I have no doubt that party is the Conservative Party. I think UKIP will only reassert itself if the electorate feel HMG is beginning to drag its feet over our exit from the EU but suspect and hope that is unlikely to happen.
  14. I always made a point of visiting A&E Departments when on patrol and as a sgt & inspector I frequently instructed my PCs to do likewise. Quite often, if trouble occurred there were already police officers in the A&E Departments already dealing with RTCs, assaults etc. that had occurred outwith the hospital and they would always intervene if necessary to deal with any disturbances occurring within A&E. Eventually, my old force paid officers overtime to police A&E Departments on Friday and Saturday nights but in the present financial situation I understand this no longer happens. I always thought it was a disgrace that people (usually patients) would act in an abusive manner towards medical staff but when alcohol enters the equation (and it usually does on these occasions) then all logical thought evaporates.
  15. oldcopper

    Why is assault acceptable

    Sadly, I hear of instances of this nature with an increasing frequency but, assuming the incident is being accurately reported by the poster, I would say this is the worst such incident I have encountered. I think the assertion that a lack of funding (and possibly decreased manpower) is at the root of the problem is likely to have some truth in it and am glad that police forces (or some at least) are now having the courage and honesty to be transparent about the difficulties they face as a result of a decrease in their budgets and establishments. I think the poster should purse the matter and if I were in his shoes I would consider engaging the services of a solicitor to do so.
  16. Payments of this nature have been made for many years and if Police Scotland are now reneging on making them it would appear that they have been paying out erroneously for some time. This is yet another example of the powers that be trying to save money by disregarding the relevant Regulations. If they no longer wish to follow the Regulations concerned they should take the necessary steps to have them altered but they know that the forearms officers concerned will continue to put themselves forward for this type of duty even if they lose the court action described as giving up the coveted firearms ticket will not be considered an option by those who hold one. A return to ordinary duties would be anathema for most of them.
  17. Things continue to get worse. I don't know whether to laugh or cry when I hear these stories. Still, one of my ancestors told the that my old force used to hire horses from a local undertaker many decades ago when they required a mounted detachment for events but they eventually decided to purchase horses for the mounted branch. Perhaps things will go the full circle and police forces will one day by their own cars.
  18. Surely the organisers of this event must have some for of appropriate insurance. If so, I imagine the premium must be really high.
  19. Has all the ingredients of a disaster waiting to happen.
  20. oldcopper

    Beggars Belief

    Totally agree with regard to references. Few people provide the name of someone as a referee without having first consulted them and ascertained that they will provide comments of a favourable nature. I have only heard of one instance of a referee failing to support the candidate. In my old force we always did unannounced home visits on candidates but I am informed this is no longer the case. There is little doubt in my mind that this aspect of enquiring into the background of candidates had deteriorated.
  21. An attack of this type was almost inevitable and, sadly, I suspect we shall see more. The lone wolf type of terrorist is probably the most difficult to deter. I am sure all our thoughts are with those who perished or were affected in any way by this incident and particularly the family of the deceased officer.
  22. We certainly lose our police powers and professional responsibilities when we retire and that that provides us with more of a choice about what to do if we witness a crime taking place. Again, it all depends on the circumstances. I was not long retired when I witnessed a couple of youths selling drugs to teenagers in a car park and, in all the prevailing circumstances, i chose to do nothing other than pass on information to the local police. However, I did intervene on an occasion when I witnessed a man knocking the living daylights out of a young woman and consider I took the correct action. Would you go to the assistance of a police officer who was being assaulted or pass by in the other side?
  23. Good point and I should say that when I was recounting the tale of the officer who was disciplined for not intervening in the pub fight, which I mentioned in my previous post, to a former colleague he reminded me that the officer concerned was also `done' for drinking in uniform, despite being off duty. The officer concerned was minus his police headgear and tunic and although he had a `civvy' jacket over his police shirt it was still visible and was wearing uniform trousers and police boots and was still recognisable as a police officer wearing part uniform to the extent that senior officers considered him to be `in uniform.' I suspect that had he intervened in the fight or 'phoned for assistance this aspect of the matter might have been overlooked but in all the circumstances he was also proceeded against for the drinking in uniform offence. I wonder how many officers have turned a blind eye to incidents due to them having consumed alcohol.
  24. I made many off-duty arrests during my service and considered it my duty to do so. It is difficult to ignore a thief coming out of a shop window display with a television under his arm or someone stabbing a passer-by. However, it is always wise to weigh up the circumstances in each case and in the example described it would probably be foolhardy to intervene immediately. I suspect it would be best to summon assistance of on-duty officers or go down the `intelligence' route. The wrong approach would be to say, ``I'm off duty,'' and do nothing. At least passing on intelligence is a form of intervention. I recollect an incident many years ago where a fight took place in a public house between 2 males who were quickly ejected from the premises by staff but continued their confrontation outside. On duty officers arrived and arrested them but while all this had been happening an on-duty officer was standing at the public bar quaffing a pint of the foaming ale while watching the combat. Someone reported this and, to cut a long story short, the officer concerned was dealt with under the Discipline Regs. for neglect of duty. His defence that he was off duty fell on deaf ears and he was told that, despite being off duty, he still had a duty as a sworn officer to take action. I take that would still be the case today.
  25. There could be some truth in that. In fact there has been some criticism of Police Scotland with regard to this issue but nothing much seems to change. I suspect it suits the political aims of certain factions to make it appear that crime is lower than it really is although a recent public survey in Scotland revealed that the vast majority of people do not believe the statistics.