POA Circulars

48 | 16.03.2011

Standardised Core Day

It has been drawn to the attention of the Executive that local Governors are proposing changes to the standard core day, in an attempt to make efficiency savings and reduce front line staff.  This is not a local decision the national standardised core day was imposed by NOMS.

Many of you will remember the dispute and decision of NOMS on the 29th June 2008, which set the core day for all closed prisons apart from juveniles and immigration centres.

You will also be aware that Dame Anne Owers ex-Chief Inspector of Prisons, commented that more Prison Officers were assaulted on a Monday as a result of these changes to the core day.  Therefore, it is vital that all local branch officials oppose any local variation to the core day, as part of NOMS efficiency programme.

Should your local Governor attempt to bring about a change to the core day, a local dispute should be registered and progressed with any proposed changes being drawn to the attention of your NEC Representative as soon as practicable.

In August 2007, the ex-Director General Phil Wheatley sent out a briefing outlining the reasons why NOMS were looking at a standard core day.  The POA NEC objected to these proposals for a number of reasons, one being the health, safety and wellbeing of staff. 

Unfortunately, our concerns were ignored and the core day was imposed.  We firmly believe this has affected the Health and Safety of staff and any further reduction to the core day can only serve to exacerbate the current situation.

This Executive would remind all staff that they should comply with the following; as directed by the NEC in 2008 and supported by the Deputy Director General at the time, Michael Spurr in the letter to Governing Governors dated 18th June 2008, which is attached for information.

  • Strict adherence to existing profiles and shift patterns.
  • Strict adherence to existing shift start and finish times.
  • Rigidly following existing working arrangements.
  • Absolute adherence to existing local security strategies.

If any change is proposed to the above, local disputes should be raised.

The Executive would again remind all members of staff that their official start and finish times is at this gate.

Thank you in anticipation of your support.


Yours sincerely

General Secretary

POA Circular 48-2011 STANDERDISED CORE DAY.pdf

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