The realities of policing highlighted at conference
Officer assaults, fatigue, long drawn-out investigations by the IOPC and the demand and capacity imbalance were among the realities of policing highlighted by a number of speakers and delegates during the first day of this year's national Police Federation conference in Birmingham.
While there were lively debates in a number of sessions, perhaps one highlight of the day was the policing minister, Nick Hurd, admitting the Federation had won the argument on funding and making a pledge to call for an increase in the policing budget when the Government next issues its Comprehensive Spending Review.
He was less forthcoming when asked to commit to fully back any recommendation from the Police Remuneration Review Body on officer pay.
"The first day of conference had a packed agenda and delegates made the most of the opportunities to get involved and ask questions of the guest speakers," says Andrea Breeze, chair of Cleveland Police Federation.
"A number of speakers, including Chief Inspector of Constabulary, Sir Thomas Winsor, pointed out the real challenges officers were facing due to the increase in demand at a time of reduced resources.
"It was pointed out that our communities are suffering due to the crisis in policing and that officers were suffering too. Let's now hope that money is invested back into the police service so we can all get on with the job we joined to do - serving and protecting the public, fighting crime, protecting the vulnerable and keeping order."
The Federation's annual conference is being held at Birmingham's ICC for the second year running.
Day 1's agenda included a welcome from national Federation chair Calum Macleod, a speech by the new director general of the IOPC, Michael Lockwood, a session on Protect the Protectors, covering officer assaults and emergency response driving, the presentation of the women in policing award, breakout sessions on fatigue, women officers and protecting our streets and a panel discussion around the demand and capacity imbalance.
The final session of the day was a Question Time style debate with the police minister, shadow police minister Louise Haigh, Sir Thomas, and the national chair.
Wednesday's conference will include a discussion around pay and conditions, a keynote speech by the national chair and break-out sessions on detectives and counter-terrorism.
Full reports on conference will be featured in the next edition of the Cleveland Police Federation magazine.