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A19 appeal dismissed by court


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Officers will not receive pay-outs following second victory by forces.


The Court of Appeal has dismissed an appeal against the decision that justified police forces’ use of regulation A19 to make officers retire.

West Midlands, Devon and Cornwall, Nottinghamshire, North Wales and South Wales police forces made hundreds of former officers leave their jobs via the method.

A19 can be applied to officers who have achieved service entitling them to a pension of two thirds average pensionable pay, and it had been argued it disproportionately affects middle ranking officers.

An employment tribunal had initially ruled the ex-officers were due compensation as a result of the change, but this was overturned on appeal in 2015.

This decision has now been upheld by the Court of Appeal.

Chief Superintendent Tim Jackson, national secretary of the Police Superintendents’ Association of England and Wales, said: “We are disappointed that the Court of Appeal has dismissed the case. 

“The Association believes regulation A19 was never intended for use en masse. 

“We supported this appeal, and the legal action before it, as we believed that regulation A19 was unfairly and unlawfully applied to our former members and led to the premature and discriminatory loss of their livelihoods. 

“On this basis, as a staff association it is our duty to support our former members who were affected by the mass use of regulation A19.

“These were very experienced police officers who still had much to contribute to policing and who felt they were treated unfairly in being forced to retire even though they were able, and willing, to serve their communities for years to come.

“We felt the case raised important issues concerning age discrimination, affecting not only police officers but the public as a whole.”

He added: “This is underlined by the fact that the original Employment Tribunal considered all of the issues in this case in considerable depth over the course of a 25-day hearing, and reached a unanimous decision in favour of all the former officers who made claims after being subjected to compulsory retirement.” 

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I won't comment on whether I think the verdict is sound, but I think that the short term focus on saving money missed a trick.

In the NHS, someone can do a '24 hour retirement'. Basically, they retire and then claim their pension. However, they can be re-employed but only on the condition that their combined pension and salary does not exceed what they were previously earning.

So, someone could retire and then get re-employed for two days per week (or whatever) and they get the same income.

Such a scenario lets people wind down to retirement whilst still retaining their skills and capability.

Individual forces should have come up with a creative solution like this. That could have involved employing them as Police Staff but pledging 'employer release' to allow them to be a Special. If someone was offered the same take home as being a Regular then they could work 5 days per week (not that anyone would!), but I am sure many Officers in such a scenario would be happy to work 2 or 3 days per week.

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PY, innovative idea but in policing what your suggesting is job share - couple of officers do 5 days to cover a role.  Few policing roles can work like that and remain effective and efficient

having reached a stage where your eligible for the 2/3 pension, any time after that is "bonus" really.  Time for some to move on and some to then move up.  Promotional bed blocking

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