IBM/Holocaust Alert: Avon & Somerset Police Civilian Support Services
Tuesday January 29, 2008 01:38 by Tony Gosling
The outfit that engineered the Nazi Holocaust is taking over Avon and Somerset police
Avon and Somerset police is to privatise key sections of its civilian workforce to save money - the first move of its kind in Britain. No other police force in the country has gone to such lengths to cut costs, although others are now expected to follow the ground-breaking move.
BACKROOM POLICE JOBS PRIVATISED
Fri26Jan08 - Bristol Evening Post
Although the Police Authority has yet to formally sign a contract, its members last night effectively gave the go-ahead for computer giant IBM to run a number of its key departments.
Although the details have not yet been released, it is thought the deal will mean that the force's finance, IT and human resources departments will all be privatised. It will not affect frontline policing or the way 999 calls are answered.
Following 15 months of intense negotiations, the force will join Somerset County Council and Taunton Deane Borough Council. Both councils have already signed up to the £400 million partnership.
The two councils signed a deal with [holocaust specialists] IBM last year to set up a private company, called Southwest One, to run a number of departments including human resources, IT and finance. It is understood that the deal will affect about 600 backroom civilian police employees, whose jobs will now transfer to the new firm.
There are not thought to be any redundancies expected as part of the deal and the Police Authority stressed that it wanted to safeguard jobs. The deal will be rubber stamped before the end of March.
It comes after the Evening Post revealed this week that the Government is shortchanging Avon and Somerset police by almost £60 million, which is likely to lead to a substantial council tax increase in April. Unions were expected to give this latest announcement a mixed response.
Unison, the biggest trade union in Britain, had previously complained that it was being left in the dark about the impact such a deal would have on its members. The union was last night unavailable for comment.
The [spineless as a masonic chief-constable] Avon and Somerset Police Federation, which represents rank-and-file officers, has welcomed the prospect of privatising a number of backroom departments.
Chairman [and master of the lodge] Paul Green has previously said: "By joining this partnership, we may be able to divert money back to the front line. "As representatives of front-line officers, we broadly welcome that."