Police Federation says it has no confidence in Patel amid pay row

Priti Patel

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A body representing police officers in England and Wales says it has no confidence in the home secretary, amid a row over their pay.

The government said on Wednesday that pay for officers earning over £24,000 would be frozen this year, amid Covid pressures.

The Police Federation said it showed “warm words” from Priti Patel “have not been backed up with action”.

This amounts to a real-terms cut and was an “insult”, it added.

The Police Federation represents more than 130,000 rank-and-file police officers.

Announcing the pay freeze in a written ministerial statement on Wednesday, Ms Patel said: “This is in order to ensure fairness between public and private sector wage growth, as the private sector was significantly impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic in the form of reduced hours, suppressed earnings growth and increased redundancies, whilst the public sector was largely shielded from these effects.”

But Labour said the Police Federation’s “extraordinary decision” to declare it had “no confidence” in Ms Patel was “a devastating blow for a hapless home secretary”.

Shadow home secretary Nick Thomas Symonds said: “The truth is, Priti Patel has badly let down police officers, who have served our country so bravely throughout this pandemic.

“A zero percent pay offer is completely unacceptable – it is a real terms pay cut, exposing the hypocrisy of a Conservative government that gives warm words of praise to the police and refuses to back it up with action.”