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The POA ran a pilot scheme with the Firefighters Charity in 2008 which focuses on rehabilitation services for POA members and in 2009 I negotiated a contract with them which sends POA members in their time of need for rehabilitation at their centres. At each Annual Conference a report back document is produced for Branch Officials attending Conference for them to disseminate the information at their respective branches throughout the POA once Conference has ended.
As you know there has been no Annual Conference this year due to COVID-19 pandemic so I attach the 2019/2020 report for your information. The contract has just been re-negotiated and came into effect April 2020. It is still excellent value and no cost to our members for the rehabilitation treatment by experts. It is funded through our Welfare Fund but unfortunately it has not been permitted to take any applications since the pandemic started.
I do not know of any other Trade Union who funds this sort of rehabilitation for their members. Each time we send someone for rehabilitation it costs £1800 per week. In 2019/20 there were 43 POA members who attended for treatment at a cost of over £77,000. The POA are extremely proud of this service that is provided to our members. Only if you are a POA member and contributing to the Welfare Fund are you eligible to make an application.
Obviously the 43 POA members who attended in 2019/20 are anonymised in the report as they are every year unless they wish to give a testimony but some of the physical conditions that were treated included neck disability, back pain, upper body issues, lower limb issues and some with complex needs. There were also POA members treated for neurological conditions and also members presenting psychological issues.
Please make sure the report is made available to all POA members.
Representing over 30,000 Prison, Correctional and Secure Psychiatric Workers, the POA is the largest UK Union in this sector, able to trace its roots back more than 100 years.