4 January 2018
Dozens of local police officers declare second jobs
Sixty-six policemen and women based in Tayside have business interests outside their regular jobs, a freedom of information request revealed. The data showed the majority of those are constables but other, more senior officers, also declared second jobs. Constables work in photography, construction, coaching, retail and refereeing, compete in football and golf and volunteer for good causes. One sergeant in the criminal justice services division is a piper while an operational support constable is an Army Cadet instructor.
Two thirds of transport police may not join new force after merger
Only a third of British Transport Police staff intend to transfer to Police Scotland when the forces merge, according to a survey. The Scottish arm of the transport police is due to be absorbed within Police Scotland in April next year, despite widespread opposition inside parliament and among officers. An internal survey has found that 37 per cent of British Transport Police (BTP) staff in Scotland are planning to transfer to Police Scotland. A further 22 per cent said that they were uncertain about their future; 14 per cent said they wanted to remain within the transport police and transfer south of the border to do that; another 22 per cent said that they were considering leaving or retiring before the merger.
Report finds police watchdog’s complaints handling procedure deficient
The Scottish Police Authority’s complaints handling procedure has been severely criticised in a new report. The Police Investigations & Review Commissioner (PIRC) has published her report containing a series of findings and recommendations following an audit of the Scottish Police Authority’s (SPA) procedures for the handling of complaints about senior police officers, SPA staff and SPA board members. The audit report examines all complaints received, progressed and concluded by the SPA between 1 April 2015 and 31 March 2017 which the complaints department assessed fell within its remit. Commissioner Kate Frame said: “The audit has highlighted a number of deficiencies within the SPA’s current complaint handling practices. “Decisions on complaints were made which lacked clarity and transparency and in many cases there was insufficient explanation to demonstrate how the decision was reached.
Scottish government to fund abuse training for thousands of officers
Thousands of officers and staff will be trained to help them prepare for new laws designed to crack down on domestic abuse. Around 14,000 Police Scotland personnel will undergo the enhanced course to improve their understanding of signs of psychological abuse and coercive control. The training, which will be funded by the Scottish government, will complement a draft Bill that would make domestic abuse a specific criminal offence if passed by Parliament. It comes after former Plaid Cymru MP Elfyn Llwyd demanded centrally-funded training in England and Wales to improve officers’ use of similar powers in place since 2014.
Drivers to be offered speed awareness courses instead of points
Drivers are to be offered courses on the dangers of speeding instead of license points in a bid to curb the number of speeders. The Lord Advocate, James Wolffe QC, has granted Police Scotland permission to begin planning courses as offender numbers reach an all-time high. The courses would be an alternative to prosecution and would see drivers avoid the £100 fine and automatic three-point penalty. New figures show that 80,000 motorists are caught every year on Scotland’s road, with charges rising steadily.