It’s That Time Again

When we come to the thorny subject of fundraising, donating, giving for the family Patrick and James’ ET against the Met.

This is the situation as it stands at 9am TODAY.

The Metropolitan Police Federation have not, to the very best of my knowledge, committed to assist James financially or with legal representation for his Employment Tribunal. If that is wrong I will most happily correct and bring my error to people’s attention.

James and his wife have now been made aware and given an estimate of the likely costs involved in bringing this case to Tribunal.  At this present time I do not wish to disclose what that amount is because it’s James’ and his family’s personal business and it’s up to them to say whether they want that figure bandied about.  Suffice to say, it’s a fair few bob.

With this in mind I am asking you all once again to consider dipping into your pockets, when you have some spare cash, and donating it to the fund.  There have been some reasonably vociferous whisperings on Twatter about the veracity of this fund, and all I can say on the matter is;

It will be administered ever so slightly differently now, the main difference is that all correspondence and appeals in relation to funding will come from me via this blog and my Facebook page.

My Twatter account is not anonymous, you can see who I am and some of you have either met me in the flesh or have worked with me in the past. I am who I say I am, I’m not sitting in Nigeria (other countries are also available) sending off begging letters or telling people they’ve won the lottery, just give me your bank account details and we’ll pay your prize money in.  I am me, and I’m perfectly happy to answer civilised questions on the subject, but if you’re in any way suspicious or reluctant please do not donate.

But here’s a sobering thought;

If every Constable in England and Wales donated just 25 pence James would raise enough money to cover his estimated costs.

TWENTY FIVE PENCE?? That would be enough to make a HUGE difference. So how do we get every Constable to donate 25p?  Some of you read this blog and can donate here.  I would ask you to speak to your mates on shift/team/squad, whatever, point them in the direction of this blog or the RetiredandAngry Facebook page where they can donate via Paypal.  Ask your mates to give you their 25p’s and make a bulk donation on behalf of them all, it doesn’t really matter how it’s done, we just need those 25p’s

If any of you have any lingering doubts about the worthiness of this cause all I can say is this.  James has support in some very high places.  Baroness Jenny Jones immediately intervened and wrote a very strongly worded letter to Mayor Boris and Bernard Hogan-Who.  She has apparently also scheduled some ‘questions’ with MOPAC in a couple a couple of weeks time.

And finally, this morning I got a mail from Baroness Angela Harris (or Angela to her friends).  I shall probably be sent to The Tower because the bottom of the email is peppered with all sorts of threats about ‘unauthorised disclosure’ but I thought it was too good not to share, so buckle up, this may be the last time you hear from me;

“Dear Mr. Wright,

Thank you very much for sending me James’s open letter to Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe. I was present at the PASC meeting when James spoke about his “whistleblowing” on recording of crime figures.  I was shocked and disheartened to learn that, in my 30+ years of being involved in policing as a member and then chair of a Police Authority, recording of crime figures had not improved.  By speaking out as he has done, James has subjected himself and his family to an unacceptable level of heavy-handed and distasteful treatment and I am deeply saddened that this man, who is full of integrity, should be dealt with in such a way.

Anyone who “blows the whistle” on perceived bad practice or malpractice within any organisation deserves the fullest hearing, followed by concerted efforts to change that organisation.  That can only be done by listening carefully and choosing to deal with the correct information in a timely and judicious way.  Finding out the truth of any allegation is absolutely paramount and I found James’s submission (as did the Select Committee) unequivocal.  That should have been the basis for action.  Sadly, petty rules have come into play and the arguments he made have been subsumed by these.

I well understand that there are such rules in place, but to be hounded by them in answer to a deeper, darker allegation, is, I believe, the wrong way of dealing with this problem. James should be given a respected place within the organisation, where his talent for spotting wrongdoing will be an asset to the organisation.  It will then show that the Met means business when it asserts that wrong practices will be rooted out.

He has my complete support and backing.

Angela Harris”

So, as you can see, James has support in high places, those people will do what is within their power/ability to do.  We, in our turn, can all give 25 pence. Personally I have given more than 25p, but the point is that 25p is all that is needed if everybody gave.  We all know that everybody WON’T give, but it is within our ability to make a difference and make this happen.

Over to you.

BREAKING NEWS – I have largely solved the problem of Paypal fees reducing the donations. For people who already have a Paypal Account, are willing to create one, the solution is this.

From within your opening screen (after logging in to your account) choose Send Money

Send it to the following email address

justice4pcpatrickAToutlookDOTcom (see what I did there?)

Enter the amount in GBP you wish to send

Click on “I’m sending money to family or friends” This option should be free of charges unless you pay by Credit Card and the money ends up in exactly the same account as if you had pressed the Donate Button.

A little more complicated and it only works for Paypal account holders but every fee that we can reduce is more for the Fighting Fund

THIS FUND IS NOW CLOSED

I thank you

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The Met Re-Launches Operation Own Goal

Back in the beginning of February I asked the Met for the cost of the James Patrick Disciplinary Enquiry.  Their reply, you may remember, was

Directorate of Professional Standards (DPS) investigations are not
routinely costed by the MPS. The investigation into PC James Patrick has
accordingly, not been attributed a cost. Furthermore, should a member of
staff endeavour to calculate the cost of this investigation, there is
insufficient information held by the MPS to undertake this calculation.
For example, police officers are required, each day, to complete a duty
state. The duty state records the activities performed by a police
officer. This record does not contain sufficient detail to allow the time
spent by a police officer on a particular investigation to be calculated.
This is largely because police officers tend to be involved in more than
one investigation at any given time and the duty state does not record
each activity performed by an officer and attribute this activity to a
particular investigation. Moreover, it should also be noted that no record
of duties exists for members of police staff.

I did not believe them and so I requested that they carried out a Review of their response.  The response to their Review was this

The information requested is not held by the MPS.  Even discounting costs
that are not connected to staff time, this information is not held.

Furthermore, the MPS response explained that information recorded on duty
states does not contain sufficient information to identify time spent on
the investigation to which your request relates.  It follows that the MPS
are unable to provide the total number of hours expended on the
investigation.

Well you can imagine that I wasn’t very pleased to see that as the direct result of a Freedom of Information request the Met had been able to state the current AND PROJECTED costs of the McCann enquiry.

Now I see in the press, also as the result of a Freedom of Information request, the Met can tell the press that it has cost them £5.9 million to guard Julian Assange.

I can see that I’m going to have to point that little anomaly out to the Information Commissioner before he finishes assessing my Appeal against the Met response.

Incompetence or out and out lies? Whichever, I’ve reached the stage where I don’t believe a single word that comes out of The Centre.

It’s difficult for me to view this as anything other than yet one more Own Goal.

MPS – just be honest and open with me and tell me how much it has cost. Is that really too much to ask?

It really is time that #TeamMet had a new manager. David Moyes is free.

#Justice4PCPatrick–The Update

As many of you will know Friday saw a small campaign launched, designed to raise the profile of James Patrick’s concerns about his treatment by the Met.

Within a very short space of time I managed to rustle up 50+ retired or former Met Police officers, all of whom were concerned about James’ treatment to stand up and be counted and append their names to an open letter which was sent to the media and assorted politicians. 50+ people who, a few days ago, didn’t know James or weren’t necessarily familiar with the full details of his case.

I know she’s going to kill me for this, but I really must (and want to) thank Sharon Birch for stepping in and volunteering to draft the letter, collate the addresses to send it to, send it off and monitor any replies.  She did a fantastic job and I probably couldn’t have done it without her.  Although I’ve only ‘known’ her a few days now I think I will quite happily call her ‘friend’.

Anyway, the disappointing bit is that, at the time of writing, not one of the news agencies has picked it up and run a story on it, not even James’ local rag or national papers that have shown an interest previously.  I don’t know why, maybe there were too many other more important news items to justify them publishing it. Who knows? Is it just a little bit sinister that not one of them showed any interest?

But there was some good news.  Through the strenuous efforts of a friend contact was made with Baroness Jenny Jones who picked up on it and she’s going to write/talk to Boris about James’ case and she publicly described the Met’s stance as perverse and biased. She also managed to get confirmation from the Met Fed that they will be funding his Discipline Hearing if it goes ahead, and she then put out a Tweet asking for any HR lawyers who might be willing to advise or act for James at his Tribunal. Not free of charge yet, but it’s a start.

Whether it be from Jenny Jones or our other activities some lawyers have come forward and other folk have contacted us to give us details of lawyers who might be able to assist.  This information has all been passed on to James.

My final update for today concerns donations. I’m not going to beat you round the head, doing a Geldof, I’m just going to mention one kind donor, a member of the public,  on Friday.  The identity of that person will remain confidential as will the amount, what is noteworthy is the message that came with it (yes I have got the donor’s written consent in triplicate to include it);

Hi there, massive apologies for not replying sooner. I’ve just read Alan’s blog and wanted to let you know that as much as I respect James’ wishes to not benefit by blowing the whistle, I don’t see why he and his family should be punished for it either. I want the money I have donated to go to James, to be used in any way he needs, whether that’s going towards his mortgage, food, bills, studies, fags, I don’t care. His honesty, for the sake of us the public, has cost him his job and his treatment at the hands of the MPS has been shameful. Please assure him I want him to use the money for him and his family, I give it freely to them with my undying gratitude and respect.”

I have already thanked that donor individually and it is not my intention to embarrass them, just to highlight the fantastic attitude that exists in certain quarters.

If you are reading this and you are a retired Met officer who has not already added your name and you would like to, please get in touch and we’ll add your name to any future mailshots that we might do. Nothing specific is planned at the moment but who knows what the Met might do next that we’ll want to write about. 50 is a good number but there are THOUSANDS of us out there, come and join us, or spread the word.  We are also grateful for any support from Constabulary officers, but for obvious reasons the emphasis must be on retired.

I think it is quite inconceivable that the Met SMT wouldn’t have heard about what was happening on Friday, and I’m not saying that they should have been quaking in their boots, but even Bernie the Ostrich cannot deny that there is growing support out there from people who’ve been there. done it, walked the walk, and KNOW what has been happening.  There is also incredible support from some politicians and MANY members of the public. And we don’t like the attitude that the Met is showing to one of it’s own. Sadly this seems to be the SOP now for dealing with anyone who challenges the organisation.

It needs to end.

#Justice4PCPatrick

Today an open letter was sent to various members of the media, politicians etc.

It was signed by approx 50 RETIRED members of the Metropolitan Police Service.

The letter is reproduced below;

I am contacting you on behalf of a number of police officers who have served with the Metropolitan Police, at various ranks, and are now retired.

 We collectively support PC James Patrick, the police whistle blower who raised concerns in relation to the report of crime within the Metropolitan Police. There are many officers who support PC Patrick but they are currently serving in the Metropolitan Police or other constabularies and through fear of repercussions, potential intimidation or victimization, they do not appear on the signatory list.
Please may I draw your attention to the following attached letter to the media and other potentially interested parties?
Thank you for your consideration.
PC James Patrick is someone the public want, and need, as a policeman. He is a man of honesty, integrity, and right.
 
So why have the MET put him under investigation, AGAIN, for speaking out and up about the flawed system of crime reporting, preventing him from leaving the force with his reputation intact? Channel 4 News suggest it’s vindictive and designed to intimidate him. BBC news agree.
 
Whistleblowers are frequently subjected to witch-hunts and driven from their careers. Those who whistle blow are often those who value their jobs more than most. If it didn’t matter, why would they bother? Yet they are victimised over and over again. It’s a typical story.
 
The Police need to be trusted by the public. When a police whistle blower calls time on bad practice, flawed investigations, or some other matter of concern, public confidence ultimately grows because people know there are good and honest coppers out there willing to stand up and be counted when it matters.
 
It’s easy to mingle with the crowd but it takes courage to stand alone, to put your head above the water and remain there whilst under attack.  And who polices the Police when they can’t police themselves?
 
There is a huge crowd of serving and retired police officers supporting James Patrick. We endorse his actions and back his right to leave the police service with his integrity intact.
 
Don’t let him become a victim of injustice. There are far too many of those already.
 
This is James Patrick’s open letter to the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police
 
 

 and we, the following, support him –

James had no involvement in writing that letter, and so cannot be hounded further by the Met for the actions of people he doesn’t even know.

I applaud it, my name is one of the 50

#TheRestIsSilence

ADDENDUM

This made me laugh, part of a tweet I received today relating to James

“leadership bent on crucifying James for unauthorised integrity

Says it all really

What The Flying **** Does The Met Think It’s Doing?

I should think you’ve all heard by now the latest sorry chapter in the James Patrick saga.

More Disciplinary proceedings. Why?

I know what for. Appearing on BBC’s The One Show and giving a radio interview on Five Live without the Job’s authority. Under the circumstances, who would actually have granted that authority?  Yes, I know James is still a serving Police Officer and as such is still subject to the discipline regs etc until the day he ceases to be employed by the Met, but is this really Gross Misconduct? Is this really a sackable offence?

I have frequently used the word VINDICTIVE in relation to the way in which the Met have pursued James. I have heard other people use the same word, and then this evening I read a Channel 4 news item that suggested that the Met wanted to sack James rather than allow him to resign in order to put him on the newly formed list of officers who have been “Struck Off”‘

Now that’s VINDICTIVE.

I have received a lot of messages from serving and former Police Officers, all of whom have supported James, and offered various kinds of help and/or advice, but one thing rang out loud and clear.

This is a course of conduct designed primarily to shut James up.  Demoralise him. Starve him. Isolate him. Screw with his future career prospects. It took DPS 18 months to prepare his last Disciplinary case, are they really going to get one ready in under 3 weeks? That would be a first.

An element of revenge is also incorporated I am sure.

The Home Office Document entitled “Home Office Guidance, Police Officer Misconduct, Unsatisfactory Performance and Attendance Management Procedures” contains the following;

2.3 The misconduct procedures aim to provide a fair, open and proportionate method of dealing with alleged misconduct. The procedures are intended to encourage a culture of learning and development for individuals and/ or theorganisation.
2.46 The investigation into the complaint must be proportionate having regard to the nature of the allegation and any likely outcome (see also IPCC statutory guidance).

Twice the word PROPORTIONATE was used. Is what has happened to James Patrick in the past couple of days PROPORTIONATE? I suggest not.

I have heard from two previous Police Whistleblowers. It didn’t end well for either of them. Both describe a series of events more or less mirroring James’ experience. One even got to the point of contemplating suicide but, thankfully, retreated from that particular course of action.

I have lost count of the number of former officers that have contacted me who are willing to testify that James is telling the truth about #crimestats and recount their experiences of how it’s done. If you want their details James I’ll pass them on to you.

Not one of these people has said that James is wrong, not one has said that James is not telling the truth, and not one person has ever contradicted my use of the word ‘honourable’ in respect to James.

James has his next appearance at the Employment Tribunal soon and after that he will no doubt make some decisions as what to do next.

Now James has to learn some new skills. First he has to learn some Employment Law and how to present his own case to the ET, but also has to learn to survive the onslaught that the Met are heaping on him. They are surely trying to crush him. Aren’t they?

I’m sure James is strong enough to overcome, but spare a thought for his family. Do they deserve this? I served the Met for 30 good years and held my head up high, but I am ASHAMED of what they have become. I no longer recognise them as the same organisation I was part of.

James has previously been accused of undermining public confidence in the police service. Well I would dare to say that this with-hunt combined with other, well-publicised issues has led to the Metropolitan Police itself undermining public confidence in the Police Service, across the entire country.

James can hold his head up high.

Can Sir Bernard Hogan-Who?

Just what is the Met trying to achieve?

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The Right Honourable James Patrick

James Patrick is an honourable man. When the current fundraising campaign was launched he was away in the West Country spending time with close family. He was not aware of the campaign, he had not requested it neither had he been consulted. He returned home, logged into Social Media and a) became aware for the first time what was being done on his behalf and b) became aware of the criticism one or more of his friends was taking on SM for attempting to raise funds and the suggestion that it may be a scam.

I know the identity of the person ‘holding’ the monies (as well as his wife) and, personally, I have complete faith in his integrity. The fund organiser may have jumped in to help without notice but there is no danger, in my opinion,  that donations would ever go astray or not be used for the stated purpose. James is nevertheless a little uncomfortable with this campaign because a) he is still a serving Police Officer, albeit not for much longer and b) he has never wanted to benefit financially from his ‘whistleblowing’.’

It is proposed that any monies donated will sit in the Paypal account until some date in the future when James needs them to help fund his Employment Tribunal (Legal Advice and ET costs etc).  His friends do suspect, however, that the Patrick family are likely to need support long before the ET sits.

Anyone who is not completely happy with that or has seen the suggestion that this is some kind of scam can have their donations refunded in full. With this in mind can anyone who has made a donation please let me know by Private Message or by emailing the fund organiser at help4james AT yahoo DOT co DOT uk whether you are happy for your donations to be used in this way or if you would like your donation refunded. Individuals’ wishes will, of course, remain confidential.

I apologise for the inconvenience and hope that this will resolve the issues

 

THIS FUND IS NOW CLOSED

Thank you all very much

Help For PC James Patrick

I have been approached by several people asking how they can donate money to help with James’ difficulties.  The road ahead will be rocky and financially uncertain.  His ET will cost money and his salary ends on 6th June 2014. With this in mind some of his ‘Non Job’ friends (got that DPS?) have set up a Paypal Account that anyone who wishes to donate can use.  PC Patrick has had no involvement whatsoever in the setting up of this arrangement and was, at that time, completely unaware. For the foreseeable future a link to it will appear within this post and (semi) permanently  near the top of the blog itself.  All you have to do is click on the icon and follow the instructions, if you do not have to have a Paypal account yourself, you can pay by Credit or Debit Card also. You are protected by all of the usual Paypal safeguards and you will, of course, receive a receipt via Paypal for your donation. All cushty and above board. You can make a one-off payment or tick the box that makes it recur monthly, the choice is a) yours, b) confidential. A link to Paypal will also be appearing on my Facebook page (RetiredAndAngry).

 

PLEASE NOTE THIS FUND HAS NOW CLOSED,

 

THANK YOU