police person,s bonus

  picklsey 04:05 23 Jun 2007

i caught some of a programe on telly last night that to say i was disgusted would be to mild a word.the police get a cash bonus if they meet there arrest figures,this is usually between £800-£1200 paid out once a year and if they go over there target they get more.

there was a policeman on who says the reason youth crime is way up is because a lot of his mates take the easy target and are arresting them now instead of giving them a warning which they used to do before the bonuses came in.he also said the reason more serious crimes arn,t being detected is it takes to long to investigate them,so interfears with there arrest figures.

they also spoke to a magistrate who says he throws some of the cases out because he can,t believe whats being put before him and that he doesn,t see the need to give a young person a criminal record for such a petty offence.

now i don,t know about others but i find it a disgrace that any bonus payments are paid to the police for obvious reasons,and it should be stopped forthwith.

  Forum Editor 07:57 23 Jun 2007

Police officers are being placed in a difficult position by this scheme, and are reacting by 'bonus chasing'. Arresting youngsters for petty public order offences liking dropping litter is hardly going to put a dent in the real crime figures.

Police should be motivated in other ways.

  Bingalau 08:21 23 Jun 2007

It used to be called "Bounty Hunting" in the old western films.

  picklsey 08:27 23 Jun 2007

thanks for confirming this is going on,i was busy when the program was on so i wasn,t sure if i was hearing it right.do you know how long it,s been going on for.

Bingalau i was going to use these words,bounty hunters are still in the USA.

  Kate B 09:05 23 Jun 2007

But there's a theory that the zero-tolerance school of policing has wider effects. When New York implemented it under Ed Koch, tackling things like litter and kids breaking windows, crime as a whole dropped over the city because of the message it sent. I agree that police shouldn't be set targets - it does have the effect of distorting the crime figures - but on the other hand, if things like collaring horrors cycling on the pavement and dropping litter improves the quality of life for people and these targets encourage police to do that, then perhaps it's not a bad thing.

I think also there's a nebulous sense that "they should be going after major criminals" which is misguided. There are specialist gun, murder and drugs units, which are largely nothing to do with your average bobby. I'm all for the street-level plods focusing on quality-of-life issues. I had a massive go at a couple of plods recently who ignored a kid sailing past them on a busy pavement, which is a problem where I live - busy street market, crowded pavement, some quite elderly shoppers. The plods were "doing something else". I was really angry with them and said whatever they were doing, it wasn't visible and that quality-of-life issues were surely part of their job: they could have collared the kid and either given him an earbashing or called for someone else to come and take him to the nick and do the paperwork.

  Bingalau 09:26 23 Jun 2007

I don't think we mind the police carrying our their "Zero Tolerance" thing, it's the getting paid extra for it that upsets us. Were the police in New York paid for it?

  bremner 09:32 23 Jun 2007

Can you tell us which police force was offering this bonus and what programme made these claims.

Police pay is set in stone by legislation and to the best of my knowledge there is no facility in that legislation for bonuses to be paid for making arrests.

  mike40 09:37 23 Jun 2007

I agree with the forum editor, the Police should be motivated in a different way. Perhaps with a little less political interference they might be.
Police are not the only ones who get a bonus for reaching targets. I understand that GP also get a bonus if they reduce your blood pressure and of course they get a lot more money than policeman

  Forum Editor 09:49 23 Jun 2007

that all police officers should spend their time busting giant drug-smuggling rings. My view, and I know it's shared by many police officers, is that the police services are being hampered by the pressure that's being put on them to turn in ever-increasing arrest-rate statistics, and that motivating them with the offer of arrest-rate bonuses isn't the way to do it.

Citing New York's former mayor Ed Koch's record is never a good idea when discussing crime. In 1981 Koch appeared in a TV ad, saying that "crime went up" and "the streets got dirtier" during his time as mayor, for the sake of a balanced budget. Koch's time as mayor has been widely criticised, and stories of corruption surrounding the appointment of friends and cronies to plum jobs are widespread in New York.

  hkvic 10:06 23 Jun 2007

Ah SPP. The formulas and requirements can vary between forces. Not possible to post all the relevant info here. Do a search on "Special Priority Payments Police".

It is not payable just for arrest figures, there are other factors to be taken into account before an officer is considered.

It is not pensionable but is subject to tax and NI deductions.

  anskyber 10:20 23 Jun 2007

The police are not alone. The current structure of payment to doctors is target driven.

There is nothing wrong with identifying targets given there are decisions to be made about priorities. Like it or not we cannot have everything as important. I object strongly to the public service sector being paid on this form of "bonus" scheme.

Deduct pay for poor performance?

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