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Public sector strikes could hinder police work, says Met chief | Police

Police shall be compelled to offer additional essential care and well being help throughout public sector strikes, which is able to hamper efforts to battle crime, Britain’s most senior officer has warned.

The Metropolitan police commissioner, Sir Mark Rowley, claimed officers had been having to spend extra time keeping track of mentally in poor health and weak sufferers in A&E departments as a substitute of catching criminals.

The feedback got here days after nurses voted to stage strikes throughout the UK – for the primary time of their historical past – in pursuit of a greater pay deal.

In an interview with the Each day Telegraph, Rowley stated he deliberate to withdraw police from a few of these duties however that the state of affairs would change into “exacerbated” when public companies took industrial motion.

“If companies we work intently with strike, it’s arduous to think about that extra work gained’t doubtlessly overflow in our route until we’re very sturdy about it,” he stated.

Rowley stated simply 22% of calls to the Met had been associated to crime and that greater than half of his officers on some shifts had been monitoring individuals with psychological well being crises in hospital or in custody.

He stated he deliberate to withdraw police from performing such duties, including: “It’s actually powerful as a result of these are tough points however I’m spending numerous police time coping with issues that aren’t police work.”

The approaching strikes are more likely to be the primary in a protracted sequence of actions over the winter and into the spring by a number of teams of well being staff, together with junior docs and ambulance employees.

A spokesperson for the Royal Faculty of Nursing informed the Guardian that emergency care “would at all times be protected” and that A&E employees wouldn’t go on strike.

Nevertheless, NHS bosses are making ready for motion by junior docs, ambulance employees and others.

A House Workplace spokesperson stated the federal government was “upset that the union has voted in favour of business motion”.

Rowley stated the Met wanted a 27% funding improve “simply to face nonetheless” as compared with a decade in the past. “We should make investments urgently in our fragile foundations,” he stated. “The blurring the place we tackle increasingly more work into social care, psychological well being, is unsustainable.”

He added: “We appear to have fallen into taking calls that the ambulance service can’t get to that are basically well being points. We’re coping with large quantities of psychological well being circumstances.

“In the meantime, there’s police work that we’re not doing. That may’t be proper.

“We’re simply doing the work round how to attract these traces. We’ll be speaking to the ambulance service and to the well being service about these boundaries.”

The newest strike motion comes amid mounting motion by public sector staff. Rail employees have staged a number of strikes over the past 5 months of their pay dispute, as have Royal Mail personnel, whereas 70,000 members of the College and Faculty Union selected Tuesday to take industrial motion over pay.

Civil servants operating public companies additionally voted to strike, becoming a member of a wave of stoppages anticipated to hit the UK as staff battle to guard dwelling requirements within the face of double-digit inflation.

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