A serving police officer contacted us and asked us to share this blog on the condition of anonymity.
If you are a serving police officer, then does this account fit with your own experiences? Let us know in the comments below:
“Some people fight for years to achieve their dream of becoming a police officer, and some get handed it on a platter with little to no work at all, I am one of those that fought for years to get my “dream job”.
Imagine fighting for years and against so many others to get to your dream, thinking you are stepping into a life long career to find out that you are miserable?
Well after just one year I am considering leaving my dream and here are my reasons why.
Anyone who says “I don’t do my job for the pay I do it because I love it” is lying!
I challenge any police officer to say that they get paid enough, that they don’t have some debt because of their job, that they don’t worry each month about paying their bills.
If you are lucky enough to get a London weighting or South East allowance, you might have a little fewer worries, but the starting pay for a police officer is just bo**ocks!
And don’t get me started on overtime, which if you ask me is non-existent and even then only the “old salts” get it.
If you take an average monthly salary of a police officer after tax £1600-1800 at 40 hours a week we get paid… drum roll… £10-11.25 an hour.
The UK living wage is £9.30 an hour or if you are in London £10.75, so considering this and the risks we face every day is that really enough?
2. Sick leave
And you better believe that I say “sick leave” with an eye roll.
They say that when you come back from being sick that they are there to support you, but really they are judging you, they don’t believe that you were really sick and they want to punish you for being sick.
Injure yourself and meet your lovely little desk which they will sit you at until you retire or give up and quit because why would they want to pay an injured officer when they could get a fresh new one for cheaper.
3. Quality of Life
Back in the day, before working for the police, I had hobbies!
I know that it is hard to believe, but I had a lot of hobbies, and now I have…. wait for it…. none!
I don’t remember the last time I did something for just me.
I work so hard during my working week, and it makes me so tired that on my days off I just have no energy, literally zero, all I want to do is sleep, I barely have the energy to clean my tiny house (because remember s*it pay) let alone meet with friends or family or do a hobby.
And those friends and family gave up on you a lifetime ago because, well you are never available or too tired.
I have worked shifts almost my entire working life so being a police officer was not a shock to the system, but I have to say for the amount we are paid the lack of sleep is just not worth it.
And how about being put on a scene watch, cell watch or bed watch and no one comes to relieve you for a toilet break until an hour before your shift finishes because none of your so-called “oppos” can be bothered to come to check on you or relieve you for five minutes, and then only getting home after a ten-hour shift to realise you haven’t eaten all-day
5. Bullying is not banter
We teach kids that bullying is bad and you shouldn’t do it, but there are grown adults bullying each other, what sort of example do the adults of the police force give when they are bullying their colleagues, their oppos daily in front of everyone?
And yes bullying happening in front of victims, witnesses and even suspects.
Banter is great, what is a workplace without banter, it’s great to have a laugh especially in a role like police, we have to lighten the mood and smile, but people need to learn the line because that “thin blue line” is very close to being the “thin bullying line”
6. IOPC/ professional standards
Imagine looking over your shoulder with every breath you take in your work… imagine wondering, in five, ten, twenty years am I going to be investigated for a decision I make right now and potentially end up in prison or losing your pension.
Am I going to get the dreaded call from professional standards or internal investigations in a day, a week, a year, or more?
Imagine covering your ass constantly, doing more than you should to cover your ass, imagine having anxiety constantly even though you think you aren’t doing anything wrong.
And even more, imagine being questioned by your sergeant, inspector and even your colleagues for everything you do and feeling like you need to get permission to do anything.
Imagine loving your job, well the content of your job, helping people, trying to make a difference but also dreading going in every day.
A lot of people won’t read this, some people will 100% disagree with me, but one or two of you are going to read this and realise…you are not alone.
Being a police officer is hard, not always because of the job but everything that goes with it, and there is no shame in saying enough is enough… I want better”.
The blog was sent into our team by an anonymous follower who is on the thin blue line.
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