The Scottish Police Federation represents all police officers in the ranks of constable, sergeant, inspector and chief inspector, police cadets and special constables; over 18,500 people, 98% of all police officers in Scotland.
The Scottish Police Federation represents all police officers in the ranks of constable, sergeant, inspector and chief inspector, police cadets and special constables, over 18,500 people, 98% of all police officers in Scotland.
To: News Editor
Date: 1 December 2013
Speaking on the crash of the Police Helicopter and the tragic events at the Clutha Vaults public house Brian Docherty, Chairman of the Scottish Police Federation said;
“Our thoughts and sincere condolences go to the families and friends of all those who have lost loved ones in this tragic incident and especially to the family, friends and colleagues of the air crew.
Their loss will of course be most sorely felt by those who knew them but has already been felt across the policing world. I am grateful for the messages of support and condolences that have come in from across the UK and from as far afield as Australia, New Zealand and Canada. I am sure this will provide comfort to the families in the difficult times that lie ahead.
I would also like to place on record my personal thanks to the great people of Glasgow who rallied and assisted us with all we had to deal with; to the courageous men and women of the Scottish fire and rescue service and the Scottish ambulance service who fearlessly risked their lives to save those of others and finally to the NHS staff who even now are dealing with the injured.
Our members are unfortunately all too used to dealing with tragedy and delivering bad news but that they performed their duties so effectively in the face of certain knowledge they were dealing with the likely deaths of one of our own, is a testament to their sheer professionalism and is a credit to the whole of the police service.
Our representatives will now turn to the job of supporting these colleagues as they come to terms with the aftermath of this incident and of course the families of the air crew who will be looking for so many answers in the days weeks and months ahead”
Officers praised in Fatal Accident Determination
In May 2010, on the M74 near Daldowie, Glasgow, there was a fatal road accident involving a single vehicle driven by a male believed to be suffering mental health issues resulting from alcoholism. Some miles south on the M74 near the Bellshill junction, this vehicle had swerved violently and collided with a police car occupied by Constables Graham Neilson and Ronald Arnott. The impact was described as massive. The police car spun from the offside carriageway across the nearside carriageway, narrowly missing an articulated lorry, colliding with a barrier at the side of the road, flew backwards over the barrier and into trees. Miraculously and thankfully, our two colleagues were not seriously injured.
In his FAI determination, John A Baird Esq., Advocate, Sheriff of Glasgow and Strathkelvin at Glasgow said:
“It is utterly miraculous that Constables Neilson and Arnott were not killed in the course of this developing incident. It became clear on listening to the evidence in this case just to what extent the public rely on the professionalism of police officers who undertake this kind of work on behalf of the public. Quite properly, they require to be trained and skilled to a very high level. They put their own lives at risk in investigating incidents such as this. They require not only to possess the requisite driving skills and abilities which involve them in operating at very high speeds, but also the capacity to remember and follow relevant protocols in the course of dangerous and developing incidents. Distressingly, they also require to have the professional detachment necessary to cope with and deal with the aftermath of serious and fatal road crashes.
It is completely to the credit of all of the police officers involved in this incident that they not only discharged those responsibilities and duties completely in accordance with prescribed procedure, but that they continued to do so after the first frightening accident involving TM32. It was astonishing to learn that on emerging from the wreckage of their car, Constables Neilson and Arnott engaged themselves in taking statements from witnesses. I have no doubt that the circumstances of their accident were such that both of those officers have suffered some dark moments since, when they have subconsciously relived it, and no doubt that observation applies also to all those others, police and lay witnesses alike, who also witnessed it, but all of these officers are to be congratulated for having the courage to continue in service after it and for being willing still to discharge these heavy responsibilities on behalf of the general public.
Further Info on Long-Term Police Pensions Reform
SPF congratulates three members for bravery
Three police officers have been recognised for their bravery by the First Minister. Sergeant Ian Harkin and PCs Michael Booker and Sarah Walkinshaw were honoured at the Brave@Heart awards for showing personal courage and compassion during a life and death situation while on duty. They were injured by an explosion after a man barricaded himself in his kitchen before causing an explosion with gas and petrol. As a fire ripped through the property, the three officers risked their own lives by bravely battling through the flames to the kitchen to aid the man who was armed with a knife. The SPF sends these officers its sincere congratulations.
On 1st April 2013 all of the death benefit schemes across Scotland deducted through Police payrolls ceased to exist and those members in the existing schemes were transferred into the newly created Scottish Police Federation Death Benefit Scheme. Because the new single force has many more members the payment deducted from salary on the death of a member was reduced to £2.50 and the sum payable to beneficiaries is in excess of £40,000. Unless you opted out you were automatically transferred into the new scheme as of 1st April 2013. Any member who wishes to opt out now should advise both their relevant payroll and their local Federation office in writing. Full details of the scheme are available on this website within the Member Services area.
The Scottish Government has announced the design framework for police pensions from 2015. As expected the proposals mirror those advanced for England & Wales. This is an exceptionally disappointing development and one which is unfair on the women and men of the police service of Scotland; many of whom now face significant disruption and uncertainty over their financial future and working expectations.
The announcement is accompanied by a letter from the Cabinet Secretary for Justice. This can be viewed here.
An updated copy of the SPF booklet explaining CARE pensions is also attached and can be viewed here. Please note the important additions in red text.
Please read all the explanatory information contained in these documents and keep visiting this page for regular updates.
Scottish Police Federation
5 Woodside Place
Tel: +44 (0)300 303 0027
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