You know the Opposition has run out of ideas when the only policy they can put forwards is an independent review of the police.
It is not exactly clear what Labour hopes to achieve by this review, nor what it will actually be reviewing, but it does align closely with Police Federation calls for a Royal Commission that was dismissed by the Government earlier this year. And, true to form, the head of the Federation has immediately backed the idea.
Perhaps Paul McKeever should point out that Labour has had twelve years of Government in which to hold this supposedly independent review. And that instead they simply spent over a decade imposing more and more bureaucratic police targets and restrictions, whilst contributing to a culture of mistrust and resentment of the police.
Perhaps Paul McKeever should point out that it is the height of hypocrisy for Labour, of all people, to declare that the Prime Minister "should be backing, not sacking the police", after twelve years of total disdain shown by their party towards uniformed officers. And to hark back to "tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime", when their government's sentencing policies have led to the kind of scenes in Tottenham and other areas in August, where 75% of those caught had prior criminal convictions.
As a front-line officer who has been assaulted twice in the last 3 months out on the streets of Blandmore, and who has gone through three cans of PAVA spray this year alone, I am not reassured or excited by the prospect of a review - royal or otherwise.
The truth is that the London riots have done more to help the cause of the front-line officer than any government minister ever will. As someone who joined up to lock up people who perpetrate that sort of violence, that's a pretty sad indictment.
PS In case you're wondering about the long absence, I was catching up on my work emails following a few days off. The advantage of being off for more than one week is that you can safely delete anything over 10 days old, knowing that the emails that have come the next week will have reversed whatever instructions the original ones contained.
'Diary of an On-Call Girl' is available in some bookstores and online.