Skip to main content

Home Secretary, Expenses and Suspension

I have for some time been concerned at the tendency to suspend first and ask questions later. The contrast between Jacqui Smith and the police makes this quite clear. This case is about a police officer suspended for 3 years over an allegation that he had fiddled his petrol expenses. It found a mistaken over claim of £90. In the mean time he had been suspended for 3 years.

I think there needs to be some form of sanction such as a process of monitoring someone being investigated rather than simply suspending them. In Jacqui Smith's case she is not being suspended whilst being investigated. This is unfair in comparison with the treatment of the police.

The solution, however, in my view is to look at a different mechanism rather than suspension for circumstances where that is reasonable.

For example on the issue of expenses if someone is being investigated any further claims can be monitored in detail. Then once an investigation has been concluded the appropriate action can be taken, but it does not prejudice the individual.

Suspension is supposed to be non-prejudicial, but it always is - particularly when it lasts for a long time.

There is, of course, the risk element that someone is deemed "a wrong un" and not only fiddles expenses, but also gets involved in bank robbery etc. I don't think that argument justifies the route of suspension.

Whichever way it is the same rule should apply for the police and the Home Secretary. Otherwise it is clearly unfair.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Service launched to reduce the pain of calling a call centre.

Click here to try the beta test call entre phoning service"John Hemming, who has created an internet Startup called Cirrostratus since he ceased being an MP, is launching a free online service to make life easier for people phoning call centres.   The service is provided by Cirrostratus, but the SIP backbone is provided by the multi-award winning business VoIP solution, Soho66." John said, "Many people find phoning call centres a real pain.  Our service is aiming to make things a lot easier.   One click on alink or the bookmarks list and our server will phone up the call centre and get through all the menus.  This is a lot faster than when people have to phone up and is less irritating." "Additionally the system uses WebRtc and the internet to make the call. This means that people don't find their normal phone system being blocked whilst they hang on the line waiting to speak to a human being." Marketing Manager from Soho66, David McManus, said: &q…

A grassroots uprising against terrorism

Original Date 26th May 2017

One thing I used to do when I was the Member of Parliament for Yardley was to call together meetings of all of the religious organisations in Yardley as a Yardley multi-faith group.  In many ways it is the creation of informal links between people that makes communication easier even if there is no formal decision making power.

Obviously this is something I would intend to do again if the people of Yardley ask me to take on the responsibility of representing them in parliament.

It highlights the sort of thing that politicians can do which arises from a leadership role within communities rather than any constitutional position.

I have already written in an earlier blog post about the principles of resolving conflict.  It can be summarised as "murdering innocents is wrong".

A number of local mosques have issued statements following the atrocity in Manchester and I think it is worth quoting from parts of them.

One said that the mosque "Unequivoc…

Lib Dems would give the West Midlands police force an extra £16,220,000 a year

Liberal Democrats have announced they would boost investment in police forces by £300m a year. This is in stark contrast to the Conservatives who have overseen devastating cuts to community policing. Theresa May as Home Secretary and now Prime Minister has cut policing budgets by over £2bn, eroding the very fabric of community policing.

Under the Liberal Democrats the West Midlands would see a funding increase of £16,220,000 a year. This could be used to restore a visible policing presence in the community and ensure the police have the training and tools to deal with the changing nature of crime.

Liberal Democrat John Hemming commented:“This investment in our police is absolutely vital. Under Theresa May – first as Home Secretary and now as Prime Minister, our police have had to deal with severe cuts. These are now cutting into the bone.“Our police work tirelessly to keep us safe and this Government has completely betrayed them.“Only the Liberal Democrats have a credible pl…