The Next Instalment – #AntiWinsorNetwork – Stronger Together

Well it’s a week on from my first blog when I came out as the ‘wife of a Police Officer’ and supporter of the #AntiWinsorNetwork, channeling my frustration about Winsor Police Reform into a blog.

So What happened Next?

Well, the earth did not stop spinning, life and it’s day to day demands continued as usual BUT something unexpected did happen.  I started to receive tweets of support from complete strangers; partners of Police Officers, Police Officers, Retired Police Officers and ordinary people concerned about the consequences of the changes.

As I said in my 1st blog, I’m just an ordinary person and I have no allegiance to any political party.  I’ve never publicly voiced my concerns about any issue, but it seems the ‘Genie’ is now out of her ‘bottle’.

Getting More Involved

I fully intend to support my husband and other Police Officers by attending the Police Event on 10th May in London.  My husband luckily is on Rest Day and will be going, if he couldn’t I would be attending in place of him.

The public see the uniform of Police Officers or the warrant card, and huge numbers do value the help they’ve received from Officers in times of need, BUT what they don’t see is that Police Officers are real people with families and friends doing an essential job in society in very difficult circumstances.

Many Officers will not be able to attend if they are on duty, if their leave has not been granted, if they are needed in court, if for family reasons they cannot travel to London.  Ironically, some originally intending to come along may now have to work as a Public Services ‘strike’ has been called for the same date.

I will join the Event and show my support in a visible way, and I will not be alone, there are a growing number of partners of Officers who will be attending, many in place of their partner who is unable to get time off.

The logistics of this are quite difficult, cancelling work, arranging childcare and travel.  At the back of my mind I’m also worried that the Event will attract people who want to attack the Police and seek confrontation.  But I will trust the Police Officers who are ‘working’ and policing the event on the day to keep me safe, and I will take this unprecedented opportunity to show my support in a visible way.

Police Officers are public servants who have a special role in Society, it’s not an ordinary job and any reforms need to take this into consideration.

The wider public deserves to know about the plans for Policing, and the proposed ‘reform’ of this essential public service. There seems to be no interest from the media in reporting this news.  The 10th May Police Officers Event is an opportunity to show the public that planned ‘reforms’ of the Police Service will have consequences across society.

If you are a serving Officer and are undecided about attending the Event, PLEASE we need you to attend.  If you are a partner or family member of an Officer and want to attend then find out from them how you too can get involved.

If you are a Police Officer or related to a Police Officer you will know the reality of the job and understand the impact of the changes.  Stand up and show your support to Police Officers in their fight against Winsor Reforms. 

If you can’t attend the Event there are still things you can do:-

  • Write to your MP, express your concerns and ask for their support
  • Get on the social networks and voice your concerns #AntiWinsorNetwork .
  • Sign the E-Petitions on the online Petitions site :

The final point I’d like to raise with you all relates to the E-Petitions:

In an article in March about the proposed Police Event, The Guardian reported that there were 135,000 police federation members in England and Wales http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/mar/30/police-officers-protest-pay-conditions  I asked myself, if this is true how come the E-Petitions have received such poor support to date?

When looking around the Government petition site I found out a pretty unbelievable fact:-

An e-petition to ‘stop the beer duty escalator’ has received more support than those petitions relating to Police Reform & the Winsor Report.  The beer duty petition states “If we don’t show our support for the great British pub, we risk losing more pubs and more jobs within our local communities”.  Its been signed by 29,322 as I write this Blog.

Doesn’t this make you think? – What are the consequences of not showing our support to the E-petitions against Winsor Reforms?

E-Petition: Reject Winsor Part 2 Completely

Currently 3,779 signatures – does that mean that more than 130,000 officers support it? http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/32177

E-Petition: Right to Strike

Currently 12,622 signatures – if the Government wants to take away the special status of Police as part of the reforms and treat as ‘ordinary’ employees then should the ‘Right to Strike’ be a consequence? http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/31250

E-Petition: Protect Police Pensions

Currently 23,773 signatures – it seems that only a minority think that the current police pension scheme needs to be protected?

http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/22321

We can be ‘stronger together’ but to achieve something both Officers and their families need to do something – perhaps signing the E-Petitions is an easy first step?

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog.

Cheryl Burgess

22nd April 2012

Twitter: @jpfassociates

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