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Policing integration in Scotland is a step closer

10 May, 2017

British Transport
Police Federation
May 10, 2017

Policing integration in Scotland is a step closer

British Transport Police Federation has expressed 'bitter disappointment' after the Scottish Parliament approved the Railway Policing (Scotland) Bill in principle after a stage one debate, and resolved to 'focus on ensuring guarantees made to members are delivered on'.

The debate followed publication of a report from the Justice Committee last week in support of the Bill, which will enable British Transport Police (BTP) in Scotland to be integrated into Police Scotland.

BTP Federation Chair, Nigel Goodband, said: "Today's news is disappointing but our focus must now be on ensuring the guarantees that have been made to our members are delivered on.

"Throughout the consultation process we submitted evidence drawing attention to our very real concerns about public safety, the cost of the integration and implications on training, as well as terms and conditions for our officers. We remain very concerned about these significant issues.

"We're also saddened to see the Scottish Transport Minister go on record as saying railway policing will be enhanced by the merger. He offers no evidence in support of this claim and knows very well the excellent record BTP Scotland has.

"We will continue to engage fully in the process, alongside others, including the trade unions whose support we value. We urge those who are tasked with delivering the integration to be open and transparent throughout the process, and ensure that passenger safety, the protection of rail staff and the futures of those police officers and staff that currently work in the railway environment remain a priority."

In a statement released yesterday Justice Secretary Michael Matheson said:

"We remain committed to providing a 'triple-lock guarantee' that secures the jobs, pay and pension conditions for over 280 railway policing officers and staff in Scotland and will be able to firm up details in the coming weeks as the Bill moves forward."