Where's the role going?

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JEA
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Where's the role going?

Post by JEA » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:19 pm

I'm new to the role of PCSO and did a lot of research in to it before applying. Most of it has turned out to be government propoganda. I thought it was a good idea, a fantastic way of improving community safety at a local level while offering good value for money to the tax payer.

However, since joining and speaking to the longer serving PCSO's, I've noticed that the role is constantly evolving, and not allways in a good way.

For instance, PCSO's in my force are now being given the task of installing domestic violence alarms. Why? Our force has a positive arrest policy with DV, to remove pressure for the victim, a good idea. It is therefore a no-no for PCSO's to get involved with DV in my force, again a good idea. So then why, possibly hours after the incident, are we going to fit a DV alarm while the offender is still at large? We're also not technicians. I know there are instructions, but I had to fit one the other day with another PCSO. The house was a maze of telephone extension cables, some working, some not. Some with broadband filters, some without. I've studdied Electronic Systems Engineering, but my collegue hasn't. I hardly felt comfortable installing it, never mind if my collegue had been on their own. After all, a person's life could depend on this alarm. I can only come to the conclusion that the DV unit thought "PCSO's are supposed to be freeing up our time, let's get them to do it". Either that or it's cheaper for us to do it rather than a technician.

We've also just been trained to do "victim visits". A welfare check, supposadly after the initial contact from the OIC. A great idea on paper. As it is we sometimes get there before the OIC as we have to do it within 7 days of the incident. If we do get there first, or while the investigation's still ongoing it creates loads of comfusion for the IP, they tell us stuff that they'll only have to repeate to the OIC. It should be scheduled well after the investigation's finished so we can offer followup support and reasurance. It would also stop the IP feeling 'dumped' by the police once the investigation's over or NFA'd. On the training course the reason for this timescale became apparent. They wanted us to identify evidence for the OIC. They only dropped "identifying other lines of enquirery" from the training at the last minute as we have no training of ECLIPSE. This implies we're going to be taking on a more investigative role because we're cheaper than PC's, and the trainers fully agreed with that deduction. After all, you don't need a warrent to investigate.

All these abstractions, and others, mean we can't carry out our primary function. Getting in to the community and putting boots on the ground. The role has evolved. Some of the senior PCSO's can't remember the last time they spent a full shift patrolling their patch. I know it'd make us unpopular but our time needs to be ring fenced. To stop other deparments offloading the crap, boring aspects of their job on to us because "PCSO's are here to lighten our workload". If it is because we're the cheaper option, then maybe we are becoming 'policing on the cheap' *shudder*. My supervisor's trying to push for our time being protected and keeps telling us we should say we're "commited - NPT priorities". It shouldn't be down to us though, it should be ring fenced by management. Every PCSO I've met has (or had) a 'wilco attitude', which is something that should be encouraged not erroded.

Any way, I could go on but rant over.

Do you have similar problems?

Where would you like to see the role going?

Where do you think it's heading?

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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by brianb » Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:58 pm

As I have said before on this forum - It's called re-inventing the wheel, only with less spokes.

The way your job is developing means you will probably follow the same pattern as PCs and will end up bogged down with paperwork and red tape or carrying out jobs which don't necessarily match what you thought that Policing was about, but more about "tick-box" PC policies.

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Jimmy_bobby
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by Jimmy_bobby » Tue Apr 29, 2008 4:48 am

You could be right Brian.

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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by jimbo » Tue Apr 29, 2008 12:10 pm

So what's next? The could create a Police Community Support, Community Support Officer in order to support the PCSOs that can't get out on the street...
Does dim rhaid i chi ddweud dim byd. Ond gall niweidio eich amddiffyniad os na fyddwch chi’n son, wrth gael eich holi am rywbeth y byddwch chi’n dibynnu arno nes ymlaen yn y Llys. Gall unrhyw beth yr ydych yn ei ddweud gael ei roi fel tystiolaeth.

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Janner
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by Janner » Wed Apr 30, 2008 10:41 am

Jea

Welcome to the real world of being a PCSO

Janner
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JEA
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by JEA » Wed Apr 30, 2008 7:33 pm

jimbo wrote:So what's next? The could create a Police Community Support, Community Support Officer in order to support the PCSOs that can't get out on the street...
:lol: :lol:

It make me feel like just a gopher. I wouldn't mind taking on all these extra tasks but they I don't think pay will increase!

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Jimmy_bobby
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by Jimmy_bobby » Wed Apr 30, 2008 11:00 pm

They’re not getting anymore time out of you, just getting you to do more within that time period, why would you expect more money? :?

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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by JEA » Thu May 01, 2008 7:40 am

erm, because I'm doing...
Jimmy_bobby wrote:more within that time period
Our "per hour" wage should go up if we're being more productive, taking on more responsibility and using a wider range of skills in that hour.

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steven
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by steven » Thu May 01, 2008 4:54 pm

Unfortunately it doesn't work like that. In my contract it lists the core tasks of the role then it says "Any other duties which are consumate to the post" I.E. do what ever we want.

The only other way of getting a pay rise is a proccess called Job Evaluation, which to be honest is not worth the trouble.
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Janner
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by Janner » Fri May 02, 2008 10:31 am

The only other way of getting a pay rise is a proccess called Job Evaluation, which to be honest is not worth the trouble.
Please don,t mention JE It was carried out in D & C 3/4 years ago, it cost the top boss her job, and gave us a pay cut, we learnt this during our training!! additionally the results of which still hav,nt been confirmed

Sadly until the desk jockeys come out and see what exactley is happening on our patches/communities then we will continue to carry on as seen fit by our local commanders

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DANGEROUS TIGER
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by DANGEROUS TIGER » Fri May 09, 2008 4:06 pm

However the role role evolves, it will always be the police who are out in front financially. £1000 Xmas bonus too! We are the poor sods who get the crap, and take it too. Sad old world, isn't it?
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by brianb » Fri May 09, 2008 4:31 pm

Bonus, what Xmas bonus?????

Also, how can you compare the salaries of both roles, they are not the same.

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steven
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by steven » Sat May 10, 2008 11:27 am

In Northumbria and possibly other forces, the NBM's have a "bonus" which is known as a Special Priority Payment (SPP). This was devised years ago when the concept of Neighbourhood policing was introduced. No-one wanted to do the job so SPP was introduced to attract people to the role, the longer you stayed in, the more you got.
To give you some idea, when we were having our christmas nights out some of the cops were bragging about how much they got, and with a little overtime, they were coming out with between £2,000-£3,000 each, for one months pay.
PCSO's got nothing. To be honest, I found it very insulting and offensive.
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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by abdi1234 » Sat May 10, 2008 3:04 pm

steven wrote:In Northumbria and possibly other forces, the NBM's have a "bonus" which is known as a Special Priority Payment (SPP). This was devised years ago when the concept of Neighbourhood policing was introduced. No-one wanted to do the job so SPP was introduced to attract people to the role, the longer you stayed in, the more you got.
To give you some idea, when we were having our christmas nights out some of the cops were bragging about how much they got, and with a little overtime, they were coming out with between £2,000-£3,000 each, for one months pay.
PCSO's got nothing. To be honest, I found it very insulting and offensive.
The answer is simple, if you want the extra pay you have to take on the extra responsibility and become a PC. Don't forget you get a high wage just short of a PCs for the fraction of the work.

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Re: Where's the role going?

Post by brianb » Sat May 10, 2008 5:44 pm

steven wrote:In Northumbria and possibly other forces, the NBM's have a "bonus" which is known as a Special Priority Payment (SPP). This was devised years ago when the concept of Neighbourhood policing was introduced. No-one wanted to do the job so SPP was introduced to attract people to the role, the longer you stayed in, the more you got.
Not quite true, it's not a bonus ...

SPP is targeted on front line / operational posts which:
a) carry a significantly higher responsibility level than the norm
for the rank;
b) present particular difficulties in recruitment and retention;
c) have specially demanding working conditions or working
environments.
steven wrote:To give you some idea, when we were having our christmas nights out some of the cops were bragging about how much they got, and with a little overtime, they were coming out with between £2,000-£3,000 each, for one months pay.
Why shouldn't they? They worked for it.
steven wrote:PCSO's got nothing. To be honest, I found it very insulting and offensive.
Why should they, you are not Cops.

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