Your editorial, (Federation bitter, 20 January), rightly describes the findings of the independent review of the Police Federation as â€œdevastatingâ€. However, it underestimates just how radical â€“ and necessary â€“ the recommended reforms are.
You ask if using the service of former Home Office permanent secretary David Normington was â€œineptitude or proof that the federation was willing to changeâ€. We knew when we asked Normington to carry out the review that he would deliver an in-depth report and would not be frightened to come up with radical solutions. That is what is needed if we are to deliver root-and-branch change across the organisation, however uncomfortable that may be. We have a responsibility to our members and the public to take up the reform challenge.
We are at a turning point in our history. Instead of operating as 47 separate organisations, we need to act as one. Our structure, which has barely changed since 1919, must be comprehensively reformed. Our operations must be professionalised, with a proper executive team and finance director, and strengthened financial accountability. And we must once more embody the highest standards and greatest of integrity. This is what the public rightly expect of the police.
The decisions we make moving forward are our opportunity to start to build a federation of the future, a federation that we can all be justly proud of, that has clear purpose and direction, is accountable and transparent.
Far from being a â€œtop-down reformâ€, these proposals will be democratically debated by our membership. But my message as chairman is clear: the status quo is not an option. The federation either reforms, or faces abolition.
Chairman, Police Federation of England and Wales
See - Police reform: Federation bitter