This is the official blog of ex-Sgt Ellie Bloggs. I was a real live police constable then sergeant for twelve years, on the real live front line of England. I'm now a real live non-police person. All the facts I recount are true, and are not secrets. If they don't want me blogging about it, they shouldn't do it. PS If you don't pay tax, you don't (or didn't) pay my salary.

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Friday, January 16, 2009

Working 9 til 5, then 6 til 2

Shadow Police Minister David Ruffley doesn't think police officers should have second jobs. He doesn't have a reason for this view, other than thinking "the prime responsibility of an officer of the law is to have all their focus and attention on serving."

I quite agree with Mr Ruffley. I think it's a disgrace that officers are just allowed to book off-duty at the end of the day and go flouncing off into society buying groceries, picking their kids up from school and playing war games online. Moreover, they should not partake in sport, read books, fall in love, nor drink beer with their pals.

Instead, I would like to see officers sitting at home bolt upright with Blackstones Police Manuals on their laps, focussing 100% of the time on how gratefully they serve their country.

Mr Ruffley, whose guiding principle of how to be an MP is to "take on anybody in authority", has clearly done his homework on the matter. Homework which he will have manfully squeezed in around his Consultancy roles with Partnership Group Holding, Dentons Pension Management and Lotus Asset Management, all worth over £60k to him in secondary salaries.

I look forwards to seeing more of Mr Ruffley's tackling of authority when he announces his policy that firefighters shouldn't be allowed to go to the gym in their spare time, and that doctors shouldn't be able to run businesses.

In actual fact, police officers ARE restricted on whether we can work a second job. We have to declare secondary employment or business interests to our Chief Constable and have it approved. This is mainly to stop corruption whereby police officers have an interest or stake in local businesses that will then affect how they police. It is always expected that those working a second job will put their police work first. If they do, how does it differ from having a passionately-pursued hobby?

It seems people don't like the idea of police officers using skills or knowledge they acquired on the beat elsewhere, especially if it means making money out of it. Which is a bit like saying that a mountain rescue expert shouldn't be allowed to work as a professional rock-climbing instructor, in case he starts to see his mountain rescues as publicity, or practice. I have a simple question: so what if he does, if he does them right?

'Diary of an On-Call Girl' is available in some bookstores and online.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about a link to the said MPs website? My wife wants to express herself to him.

16 January, 2009 19:58

Blogger uniform said...

Pity this twat did not spot that Derick Conway ,Conservative,when he was defrauding the public purse by paying his dandy son to wear shit designer clothes.

Here's a clue fuck off you come day go day waste of sperm and egg.

I'm from council house stock by the way.

16 January, 2009 21:14

Blogger blueknight said...

But if a Special can have another job, what is the difference

16 January, 2009 21:54

Anonymous MetAnon said...

ah but you forget as police officers we dont have lives outside the job, we book off at the end of 1 shift and just go into suspended animation till we book on for the next one.
blueknight raises an interesting point though.

16 January, 2009 22:03

Blogger PC Bloggs said...

What's more the Special's other job actually comes first in general.

17 January, 2009 10:34

Anonymous Anonymous said...

No point in getting upset about it,the prick is completely out of touch with the real world, probably just another example of a expensive education masking low intelligence.

17 January, 2009 10:39

Blogger steveg said...

Eyup Lass

(I'm a Yorkshireman, so the above is a standard greeting)

being now halfway through your book, I can't actually understand how you would even find time for a second job! Or are you just PO'd about the possibility that you might not be able to even if you wanted to?

As far as I am concerned, if what you want to do in your spare (haha) time, does not impede on your principal employment, either legally, ethically or physically, then it should be of no business of anyone else; and that goes for everyone, not just police officers.


17 January, 2009 10:54

Anonymous Anonymous said...

17 January, 2009 12:50

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nicely done exposing the hypocrisy of Ruffley's comments through his extra work.

17 January, 2009 13:37

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quite right. And I think bank managers should be able to moonlight as financial advisers just like politicians who can `whore-out` their mouth to anyone who'll pay the best rate.

17 January, 2009 14:23

Anonymous Anonymous said...


Sent an email to Mr Ruffley. Text below, will let you know if I get a reply.

Hello David

your comment re policemen not having second jobs is as farcical as it is hypocritical.

i know a policeman who coached at a rugby club every wednesday and sunday for years. He took took a team from u-14 to u 18 age group developing many lads who went on to play successfuly at universtity and/or the first team. This was a man with a skill for organisation and motivation who, i think, made a wonderful contribution to his community. If he had chosen to run a business in his spare time the only difference would have been would that he would have made money. He would have been employing people, paying taxes and providing goods or services to his community. In addition, I know ther officers who have made similar contributions. Are you aying this man should not have coached that rugby team? Everybody involved would have lost out, the same if he had the opportunity to be part of a business venture and not taken it because of short sighted, ignorant and unworkable ideas from ill informed members of parliament like you. I can provide you with the name of the officer and the rugby club if you doubt me.

I think the members register of interests displays why your ideas are hypocritical. If an MP can have a second job that keeps him in touch with various communities then so can a policeman. In both cases they should not do this if it interferes with there primary role for which thay should be answerable as public servants.

Sir, engage your brain before opening your mouth. Until you learn this simple skill then you do not deserve to shadow minister for the reform of anything.

Please reply if you have anything constructive to say.

17 January, 2009 15:29

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. You've got sharp claws and you used them well.

My husband is quite underpaid for his job as a police officer. This makes me really angry in that aspect and also with what you already pointed out - officers have lives outside their jobs. They work to live not live to work.

17 January, 2009 18:35

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would agree with Ruffey if we had an expense account and John Lewis catalogue instead of another job.

17 January, 2009 21:22

Blogger Metcountymounty said...

a mate of mine is a sub-officer in the local fire brigade, he proudly boasts that he has the personnel in his station to build a house from scratch with every trade going, and they get to train 3 hours a day in their own gym, and sleep at night. I know nurses who work in A&E full time and on their days off have other jobs. If you can't detach yourself then you'll go mad. That MP is a knob.

17 January, 2009 22:02

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you are using specialised skills and knowledge that were given to you via the police training - it could get a bit dubious as people might spread it around they had a tame copper.

18 January, 2009 08:55

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 0855;

Good point, especially as my specialised skills consist mostly of using various guns, smashing doors and windows in and driving fast...

Questions may well be asked....

18 January, 2009 10:05

Anonymous R/T said...

Anon - you're way ahead of me then. Just the driving fast bit here!

18 January, 2009 14:45

Anonymous shame_on_me said...

May I draw your attention to the fact that, incredible as it may seem, many jobs and professions have similar restrictions. I'm just an IT bloke, but it's the same for me.

Firemen, Dustmen, and some others are notorious multi-jobbers. This used to be a bit of a tradition in the police too, with area cars charging around jangling with central heating kit. But now no more.

Less of the police paranoia, please, more of the interesting right-wing opinion.

18 January, 2009 15:39

Blogger thespecialone said...

I am a Special (hence my name!) by the way. I reckon that this stupid MP (arent they all?) may be regretting what he has said. After all, MPs dont have massive
2nd incomes from employing family members or claiming for TVs, kitchens, kettles, lightbulbs etc do they?

18 January, 2009 18:51

Anonymous mac said...

The point being missed is that police officers ARE allowed to register an outside business interest but it has to be approved by the Chief (or more likely their secretary). Down here in the South where the wages v cost of living makes retention more of a problem,that usually isn't a problem provided it doesn't breach the reservations expressed by commenters above (use of police training, conflicts with police duties etc.) and also the statutory restrictions such as licenced premises. I know plenty of colleagues with outside jobs. So around here it isn't a problem. All this is is an opinion expressed by an idiot hypocrite who should think before he speaks. I think the bigger issue here is that there is a general assumption that once Jackie and the rest of NuLabour get shown the door some sense may be restored to the law and order agenda. If someone of this level of a) stupidity b) rank hypocracy is all that the opposition have to offer then don't expect any improvements in this lifetime!

18 January, 2009 18:53

Anonymous Rural Traffic Cop said...

Well speaking from experience... I was once a Special - there are excemptions to what full-time work you can carry out. I was in the garage trade so I was ok. But then I got a job as a civvy goaler in the Custody Block. I was then told that I could'nt do both. It would appear that you cannot do anything that is a conflict of interest - ie. door staff, security etc.

I am currently seeking other work (i'm a full-time PC now of 8 years) as my wages dont go that far. I am going to have to seek autority from the chief and then seek suitable employment. Of course if this burk of an MP had a word with good ole Jackie and she gave us our wage wise (properly and in full) we perhaps would not need other employment.

Ho hum...

18 January, 2009 20:14

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does this include flogging T Shirts and books?

18 January, 2009 20:57

Anonymous Anonymous said...

age old story bur where do you draw the line? As a bobby you can go on duty anytime, even on restdays. I agree and disagree with all of the above. 9 years in and still not earning that much.
If it all goes wrong when do you then become an officer and not a civilian? We have powers that we can exercise without uiform after identifying ourselves as police officers.
I agree with the two faced argument but he can't do what I can.
Any money generating ideas gratefully accepted but at the end of the day we most certainly ain't MPs. We are a lot more responsible!
Sorry for being the harbinger of doom but here is a point where the line has to be drawn. The fire brigade (and their officers) can't arrest someone on duty never mind off duty.

18 January, 2009 21:28

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Forgive the spelling mistakes, d*%gy keyboard!

18 January, 2009 21:30

Blogger PC Bloggs said...

Anon 21:28, interesting point: we have many front counter staff who double as Specials. When they are on duty as front counter staff, they can't do things like issue re-bail notices, arrest people who have failed to sign on, or dive over the counter and rugby tackle escaping criminals. As Specials they can and must do all of that whether on or off duty. It does cause some head-scratching, and an uncomfortable blurring of roles.

18 January, 2009 23:15

Blogger blueknight said...

Rural Traffic Cop
You are right, but in some places Specials are a bit thin on the ground and in the past the normal rules were not always applied.
In one town I saw a Special who was also a traffic warden (unless he had a twin brother).
A special is not paid, but has Police powers. A PCSO is paid, but only has limited Police powers. Police civilian Station Enquiry and custody staff are paid and do not have Police powers. Police civilian staff can be Specials but PCSOs cannot.
Few Police Officers take second jobs for fun. It is a usually necessity, to pay for holidays etc.

19 January, 2009 00:23

Anonymous Anonymous said...

not sure which town the a and e nurse works in who has the strength for another job when she finishes, she is either superwoman or she works in a cottage hospital and sits down most of her shift.
i am a penniless midwife and am allowed to get another job as long as it fits with shifts, days nights mon till sunday, 96 hrs in 7 nights then 7 off to regain consciousness.Who on earth has the strenght to do another job properly???
we do nettos leeds market and poundland and spend time together.your kids are only there once and they wont care about the med holiday,they will remember if you are there when they need you!
my dad was a policeman/mechanic and he was never there for me or my brother and its a crying shame,i did have a fab holiday twice a year but not spoken to him about anything real for years.
Be warned!

19 January, 2009 11:35

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It must be a condition of being an MP that one must be well versed and be a practitioner of hypocrisy.

Most MPs have second jobs serving on boards of companies and the like. No-one is allowed to complain that this detracts them from serving their constituents.
Many have a relaxed view on being ethical with expense claims...

19 January, 2009 12:27

Anonymous Rural Traffic Cop said...

ah blueknight, dont know the force that you are from but when I was a Special 94-02 we had a Special who was a Traffic warden in the same force area but different division.

He's a Police Warrants Officer now, and I believe still a Special.


19 January, 2009 13:35

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish i had time for two jobs.
Maybe a reasonable pay rise for police officers would sort out his concerns.


21 January, 2009 11:30

Blogger Virtual Supply said...

said... wish i had time for two jobs.
Maybe a reasonable pay rise for police officers would sort out his concerns.


Appens that coppers are paid pretty good these days, specially when you factor in their guaranteed employ, pension, 'olidays, sick time, sports, promotional prospects, aye, I would chance to say you bloody coppers, during these time of unemployment, are on a pretty good number, so if I were you, I would shut thy trap and stop your lips flappin. Start thinking, if your able.

23 January, 2009 07:12

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