Police Officers Feel Powerless Amid Public Sector Strikes

POLICE officers feel ‘helpless and powerless’ to do anything to improve their financial situation, Hampshire Police Federation has said.

Public sector workers from a wide range of areas have launched a series of strikes in protest about their pay – including emergency workers from the NHS.

However, although police officers’ pay has reduced in percentage terms more than striking workers, they are prohibited from taking industrial action.

And this situation has also left officers picking up the demand from some sectors of striking workers.

Hampshire Police Federation Chair Zoe Wakefield said: “I think officers feel helpless and powerless to do anything about the situation that we’re in because we can’t strike.

“We can’t even talk about striking because there’s a misconduct offence of bringing the force into disrepute.

“Then, when you see all the other public sectors going on strike, whether or not it will have any effect, time will tell. But really difficult for officers. And then when we get the increased demand when those other organisations are on strike, that can then have an impact on our workload.”

Zoe added that she feared the “tide is turning” about potential support for strike action among officers – should they ever be allowed that option.

She explained: “I don’t know if a lot of officers would strike. I know when we’ve asked that question before, not many would, because of that sense of public duty. But I think the tide is turning.

“I think nurses are in the same position, aren’t they? I think many nurses would have always said, ‘No, I would never strike’, but things get so bad where they feel they have no other option.

“I think policing could possibly be going down that road as well, that actually they feel they’ve got no other choice that if they want things to change, this is their only option.”

Scroll to top