Changes to regulations which wasted money

15 December 2017

Police officers will be allowed to retire or resign while under investigation for misconduct under new regulations coming into force today as part of the Policing and Crime Act 2017.

In January 2015, the then Home Secretary Theresa May announced that police officers facing misconduct proceedings must remain in their positions until the outcome, if the possible penalty was dismissal from the force. These new regulations will see that move reversed.

The previous regulation meant forces continued to pay officers under investigation for gross misconduct while they are suspended or on restricted duties, regardless of if they wanted to leave policing.

Police Federation of England and Wales General Secretary, Andy Fittes, said: “The existing rules did absolutely nothing to serve justice; they wasted money and resources when many matters could have been resolved far more quickly.”

Other new regulations also come into play today for the first time as part of the Act, including the establishment of a Police Barred List and a Police Advisory list, which are to be managed by the College of Policing.

The barred list is a publicly searchable database that will hold information on former officers who were dismissed for gross misconduct from policing and therefore banned from serving in the service again. Anyone on the list will remain on the database for five years.

The advisory list will retain information on officers, staff or specials that either resign or retire while under investigation.

Mr Fittes said: “We still have concerns about how the two lists will operate in practice. We will keep working with the College and chief Officers to make sure officers are treated fairly.”

Also coming into effect today is a regulation enabling disciplinary proceedings to be taken against former police officers, which will apply to all officers serving on, or after 15 December 2017, but not those who left prior to this date.

For more information, visit the Home Office website.