Crime scene investigators, detention officers and 999 call takers are amongst the police staff who are planning to take strike action in a dispute with bosses at Cheshire Police.
Many staff already work unsocial hours, often working over 40 hours in a week before getting a day off. At times of peak demand on the service, such as during events like Creamfields, staff were previously asked to volunteer to work on their days off for overtime pay. But bosses at Cheshire Police now want to force staff to work on their days off for no extra pay.
The proposed change, which includes an end to paid overtime for planned events, would cause real difficulty to staff who are struggling to make ends meet and working hard to balance work with other caring responsibilities.
Maria Moss, UNISON North West Regional Organiser said:
“The present system works well and there are always sufficient volunteers to meet the needs of the Service.
“The proposed change will impact on Police Staff, who have already seen their living standards fall by 13% since 2010 due to falling real wages, and some staff rely on overtime pay to top-up their income. This is another cut in their pay packet they can ill afford.
“The proposed changes will mean that some experienced and skilled staff may have to leave the Service as the cost of additional childcare, combined with a reduced income is simply unaffordable. For many who already work unsocial shift patterns, the inability to plan time off with their families is too much to bear.
“This is simply an attempt by Cheshire Police to make a saving at the cost of staff well-being. Bosses need to think again and ditch these damaging proposals.”