There are many ways to sabotage they way work is done. Forty years ago we had ‘work to rules’ which could shut down workplaces pretty effectively without much other than overtime and bonus pay being lost. Whilst I no supporter of strike action, I would say as a manager it was much easier to deal with than work to rule. We should also remember that we have been ‘dociled’ into the management view on industrial action and totally failed in comparison with industrial competitors to develop democratic-rational industrial relations.
Work to rules were often unofficial and I suspect UK police have been engaging in one for a very long time. Gadget et al bleat on and on about health and safety and not being able to change a wheel on their motors, let alone for the despised MOP (Muppet Outside Police). Such ‘rules’ were around 30 years ago. We changed wheel for stranded people because we we were not such cunts as not to. Our two fingers went up to management, not the public. If the job was going to reprimand or sack us for doing it, then we lumped the uniform in a black bag and went back on the tools. We just couldn’t stand being the kind of toad who jobsworthed.
If you look at the first and second ‘super reports’ into Baby Peter Connelly, you find jobsworthing everywhere, including in the cover-up the first report oozes like a septic wound. The second report recognises that Peter could have been saved if a decent individual had dealt with the first incident. About two dozen people should be hanging their heads in shame, or preferably from piano wire.
Not far away, a 13 year old kid shot his pregnant sister with a cheap BB gun. Her (shitbag idiot) 20-ish boyfriend beat the kid fairly badly to around minor sec 47 standards, eventually ringing cops and saying kid had shot sister with BB gun. Lots of cops turned up and sat around doing nothing. I should have charged for the tea. It seemed none of them knew the family concerned, somewhat surprising given what previous officers have said about the criminal clowns. Eventually, scum boyfriend and BB kid were both nicked, the latter taken to hospital by two cops, where they looked at him for several hours. Scumo was back at the house after discharge, being noisy. The kid went to his Nan’s. Lots of resources tied up in this for a long time. It was obvious the dealing officers were clueless (better not say how I know). 30-odd years back, I’d have favoured one of Shijuro’s “Polish Solutions”, smacked the scumbag hard and broken the kid’s toy. I’d really have written it up for summons and sent kid to hospital in ambulance. There would have been no flush of coppers, only me.
I’ve seen a lot of stuff like this and worse of late. The Baby P reports are full of it. So are many IPPC clown cases. I don’t believe this is red tape – I’m convinced it’s a much more serious collapse in integrity. One might say it’s a load of balls.
Working to rule has specific meaning in industrial relations – it seems to me that much of our public sector has been handed this condition on a plate. There is a solution to this time wasting, and as cops and others have only made matters worse and worse, it’s clear the solutions can’t come from the inside as officers across the board are scared to speak up. Cops starts on C4 next Monday at 9 p.m. I imagine the farce will be detailed again, but hope some solutions are put forward. The main solution is so obvious that failure to implement it should entail wide incompetence sackings across constabularies and town halls.