I have thought long and hard about this one, I know that there are those of you out there who will definitely not agree with me on it, and also, there are those who definitely will. It is a subject that seems to have polarised large sections of the Twatterspere.
There, I said it.
There are so many things about Police Now that bother me, and I donâ€™t even know what order to put them in, so Iâ€™ll go for Random.
They are a Registered Charity? Â Why? Does this mean that every other Police Training Establishment can register as a Charity? I very much doubt it.
Their registration with the Charity Commission contains some very bold, and to me, bizarre, statements.
Interesting, I thought they only operated in England. Â I have asked them what they are doing for PSNI and Police Scotland but as itâ€™s a weekend I havenâ€™t had a reply yet.
Under Classication it mentions Armed Forces. Â What on earth are Police Now doing to benefit the Armed Forces and support their status as a charity?
The Beneficiaries of this Charity are The General Public and Mankind. Â How crass, glib and arrogant is that statement? Â I doubt very much that Billy and Joey living in their South London Council flat will feel any benefits from Police Now.
The Home Office has â€˜giftedâ€™ Police Now Â£5 million in order to fund 250 training places. Â My elementary abacus tells me that equates to Â£20,000 per candidate. Â£5 million that undoubtedly has its origins in the Top-Sliced Police Budgets.
In 2012 Nottinghamshire Police stated that it cost them Â£13,000 to recruit and train each Constable. Â In this age of Austerity and low inflation and salary increases that figure canâ€™t have increased too much since then. So Â£20,000 doesnâ€™t really represent Â Best Value.
Most charities are exempt from enquiries under the Freedom of Information Act. Â Whilst this may not have been a deliberate ploy it doesnâ€™t help to reassure the cynical amongst us. They could embrace the FOIA and answer questions anyway.
One of their original directors appears to have been appointed with about 6 months Police Service, and has now resigned from the board. Â What possible skills and exerience of Policing can somebody with so little service bring to the table? Â If the skills they bring lie elsewhere then what are they doing in the Police Service? That one has me confused.
Something else that left me confused were TWO entries at Companies House;
Firstly Police Now, he registered charity,
Then we get Police Now Enterprises Ltd, a second and separate company with three directors, who are also directors of Police Now, and one of whom happens to be the Dire tor of HR at the Metropolitan Police Service. Â I have absolutely no idea if that is kosher or not, all I know is, in days of old it would not have been appropriate. Â Times change, I get that, but it leaves me confused and concerned.
Finally (almost) half a dozen job adverts for positions with Police Now, advertised in LinkedIn.
If you look at the ads, see the Job Description, Person spec etc etc, there is a paragraph hidden away in the Job Descriptions that bothers me. Â I have no issue with the salaries offered etc, that is a matter of public record and I donâ€™t need to comment, people can have their own opinions on salaries et al.
More sinister (to me at least) is this paragraph
â€œA great team passionately working to build the next generation of leaders â€“ both in and outside of policingâ€œ. What are they saying here? Â They are training recruits to be â€œleadersâ€ who will subsequently leave the Police Family and find recompense elsewhere in the Private Sector? Â Is that what they mean?
In the light of that I now have an issue with their logo. Â I would love to show you but itâ€™s copyrighted and canâ€™t be reproduced, but what it says is Police Now, and underneath; Influence For Generations. Â Hardly that if the recruits/graduates are going to leave after a few years to pastures new.
Or maybe Iâ€™ve got it all wrong and someone will point out the errors of my ways.