Off-duty cops in protest

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AROUND 100 Derbyshire Constabulary officers are expected to take to the streets of London as part of public sector protests over Government cuts, pay conditions and pensions.

The officers will join thousands of public sector workers including other off-duty officers, civil servants, health workers, and MoD staff from across the country taking part in protests or strikes today, Thursday, May 10.

However, many of our regional local authorities and councils indicated they were not expecting staff to be joining any industrial action.

Derbyshire Police Federation chairman Mark Pickard said: “Police officers have had enough of the constant state of uncertainty and the deliberate, sustained attack on them by this Government.”

Police and the armed forces are banned by law from taking industrial action but many angry with the Government’s 20per cent budget cuts and police pay reforms will be joining protests while they are off-duty by marching on the Home Office.

Officers also fear cuts could lead to a reduction in front line policing for the public.

Other public sector workers hope the protest will highlight opposition to reforms which they fear could leave millions of workers having to pay more into pensions, retire later and receive less when they stop working.

A Unite spokesman said he expected members to be holding protests at Chesterfield College and Chesterfield Royal Hospital.

Others have also been holding protests outside the Job Centre, in Chesterfield.

NHS Derbyshire County primary care trust said it was not expecting disruption to its services because the protests did not involve every union.

East Midlands train services have also been disrupted after employees have gone out on strike today, Thursday, May 10, over pensions.