POA Circulars

79 | 07.09.2016


On the 29th July 2016 an open letter on behalf of the NEC, shared with POA members via POA Circular 70/2016, was written by myself to Michael Spurr (attached -1). Following that letter Michael Spurr sent an initial response on the 8th August 2016 (attached - 2).

Myself and the General Secretary Steve Gillan met with Michael Spurr, Phil Copple and Martin Beecroft on the 30th August 2016 to outline our concerns in depth and to listen to the plans that NOMS have to reduce violence across the estate. As a result of that meeting a further letter from Michael Spurr was sent Friday 2nd September 2016 identifying what NOMS proposals are to reduce violence and improve safety (attached -3).

The NEC continues to have serious concerns about safety issues and high levels of violence in all secure workplaces where our members and others are working. For those working in the Private Sector or at non-NOMS workplaces the NEC has determined that we will continue to pursue improvements and seek further meetings with relevant stakeholders as a matter of urgency. Further updates will be shared once we are in a position to do so.

The NEC welcomes the commitment in the latest letter from Michael Spurr to increase staffing levels within the closed estate, revising benchmarks to increase staff to prisoner ratios and increasing staffing levels at 10 Prisons and Berwyn initially. However, whilst we are still engaged in negotiation with regards to the proposed new Offender Management Model we retain concerns about the potential impact for POA members. The NEC also welcomes the additional commitment contained within the letter to reopen dialogue on pension age and future pay arrangements.

At a Special NEC meeting convened on 6th September 2016, the Executive determined that engagement should continue over plans to increase staffing levels and engagement over the Offender Management Model. Engage with NOMS on how recruitment and retention is to be achieved with increasing staffing levels, set out our expectations in detail with regards to tackling violence and monitor progress against published statistics.

We will of course continue to keep members informed on progress and updated on the work that we are doing as and when we are in a position to do so.

Yours sincerely


National Chair

Enclosure - 1 (2).pdf

pdf, 373.3K, 07/09/16, 1243 downloads

Enclosure - 2 (1).pdf

pdf, 797.7K, 07/09/16, 666 downloads

Enclosure -3.pdf

pdf, 1M, 07/09/16, 1017 downloads