Monday, 9 September 2013

Information is Power

Isn't it strange how several people can have the very same idea at the same time? On Sunday I was pondering what the hell to write next on this blog and one idea was '10 Ways to Save Probation'. But I got sidetracked, and didn't write it, but I notice at least two other people did. Tweeter POofficer posted this 'How to Save Probation' on their blog and Rob Allen posted this 'Are we too late to save Probation?' on their blog.

It's completely obvious to me that an absolutely key element of any plan to try and save probation has to be the gleaning and sharing of information. If it were not for another blogger, Joe Kuipers, we would be almost completely in the dark at the present time in terms of information regarding this whole omnishambles. 

For what ever reason, Napo has proved to be incapable or unwilling to collect and disseminate information on a regular basis, even though this is an essential part of fighting any campaign, and the advent of instant publishing has revolutionised the ability to do this speedily and cheaply. The vacuum has to be filled, hence my efforts here and those of others taking full advantage of 'new media'. 

If a campaign is to have any chance of success, we must all share what information we have, and especially what's going on in each Trust. So, my contribution to 'ways to save probation' is please tell us what's going on where you are!  


  1. At a time when there is much to be gained from sharing information, Napo on the 16th September is forcing all Branch websites behind a Chinese Wall so they can only be accessed via passwords.

    1. Thanks for that bit of info, but it's a tad academic because I think only Hampshire and Isle of wight branch actually used the facility. Having said that, I did find it interesting and as you indicate, Napo seem to be losing their way on so many fronts.

  2. Good Advise from Officers of Napo Greater London Branch - circulated today by Email:-

    :How can anyone expect you all to carry on with "business as usual"?

    T h e y c a n ’ t

    Let's acknowledge that we are all working under a very high level of stress and anxiety and do what we can to deal with it.

    At the risk of being repetitive I would advise you all to work only your contracted hours and do only what you can within that time. As a rule of thumb if you are doing 5 hours a week in excess of your contracted hours and struggling to take TOIL then there is a problem. See your manager and discuss.

    If for example when the computer crashes, and you lose the report you've spent all day writing, fill in an A&I form, send it to your manager and for goodness sake don't stay in the office until all hours rewriting it. If you do stay late remember the sensible thing to do is to make an arrangement to take time off.

    If you have to cover for an absent colleague discuss the situation with your manager and don't try to do the work of two people.

    WMT in the red? Don't just grit your teeth and put up with it. Discuss it with your manager.

    Remember that not only does your employer have a legal responsibility to ensure their working practices are not detrimental to your health and well being but you also have a legal responsibility to look after yourself at work.

    Overworking can have a serious impact on your health, your ability to work at your best, and affects all those who know you.

    @napoukglb (Twitter) "

  3. The robots will put up with it jim that is the problem i see them like battery hens tapping into the computer 'all the good guys and gals should jump ship to yots/social care and leave the frustrated police officers too it with their shiny name badges and oasys

  4. I'm with you Jim, but we are getting precious little. Anyway n email going to the Board chair tomorrow with some vital questions I have been meaning to ask. I'll let you know in a month or two when they get back to me. Thanks for your blog it has helped many of us out there realise we are not the lone shouting voices :-)

  5. "Statement from Pat Waterman Chair of (Napo)Greater London Branch

    "Today, at the TUC Congress in Bournemouth, Napo General Secretary Ian Lawrence told delegates that 'negotiations with the Ministry of Justice are in disarray' and that 'industrial action was a racing certainty'.

    Napo is keen to emphasise that it has done everything humanly possible to emphasise to the MoJ the implications of the risk their ill thought through plans pose to the public and has also put these concerns firmly and directly to both the Secretary for Justice and the Deputy Prime Minister only to be met with stock answers based on misleading information about re-offending. The probation service is high performing and meets all its targets unlike parts of the Criminal Justice System that have already been outsourced such as tagging, prisons, prisoner escort, and Courts interpreting services.

    Industrial action is always taken very reluctantly as a last resort by Napo, however, what is at stake at this time is the very existence of a comprehensive integrated and effective award winning public service that currently has a highly skilled work force that always places public protection integrity, and high standards before and above profit and commercial considerations. "

    Pat Waterman, Chair of Napo Greater London Branch, TUC Congress Bournemouth September 2013"

    Andrew Hatton (via facebook)

  6. Ian Lawrence Napo General Secretary speaking at Pre TUC event in Brighton (via You Tube)

    Andrew Hatton

  7. More from Napo via Email and website about a future event


    "Save Probation Rally & Lobby of Parliament 9 October 2013

    Lobby your MP to 'Save Probation' on Wednesday 9 October

    Write to your MP now, telling them you will be coming to Westminster on the day of the lobby and asking to meet with them.

    Download a model letter Lobby Letter

    You can find and email your MP at

    if you cannot make the lobby, you can also write to your MP asking them to attend the rally
    1pm - 2.30pm
    Committee Rooms 11 and 14, Palace of Westminster

    (More details to follow) "

    Andrew Hatton

    PS - They are busy communicating today - notice of three things in about one hour!

    Presume it is going to all members - others are never too late to join!

  8. has anyone seen the slide from noms about the plan, everything is super and absolutely zero detail about how this epic omnishambles is going to work.

    1. There are some Powerpoint links on the Clinks website - is that what Anonymous had in mind at 19.28, they look officially approved by MOJ etc but I have not studied them.