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The resignation of Stephen House as Police Scotland Chief Constable further highlights the complete turmoil in which this vital public service finds itself. There is no need to go through the by now well known chapter of disasters which have emerged and of course must be added to the similarly shambolic state of heatlh, education, transport and a lot more.... all on the SNP's watch which is now of eight years' duration.

As the first anniversary of the referendum approaches, it is of course far too much to expect the SNP to admit that, while they indulged themselves exclusively in their singular obsession, they have also allowed the public services devolved to Scotland to fall apart.

Now I very much doubt whether the SNP would have done all that much better even if they gave these services their full attention, but why don't they start to get what they already have under some control before taking on other responsibilities.

So not much of a choice for the Scottish electorate next May.... but it looks as if, in their wisdom, the turkeys are going to continue to vote for Christmas.

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I think the one nation Police Force is an OK idea, as part of the UK.  In a separate Scotland it may feel the weight of across border crime to be a big problem, extra finances will have to be used to cover measures currently derived from Scotland Yard. I talk of Forensics , top detectives , training schools, communication equipment, standards of investigation , and the like, all covered from London, and would cost a separate force a bundle to buy in. Sometimes bigger is better but it has to be properly managed.

Control rooms( I speak from experience), need to be fairly local to problems. Money saving measures using computers etc are a recipe for mistakes. Going back to the RTA which has caused this uproar, a smaller local control room staffed by people with local knowledge might have averted the problem. The police force in my view is no longer an emergency service. response times are a joke, there is only the Fire Service which comes near to having an instant response. The Scottish government ( whatever the colour) needs to get a grip of policing.

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Whilst I think that the SNP government have generally made a much more efficient and effective job of governing the nation than the Labour/Liberal coalition that preceded them with that likely to be overwhelmingly endorsed by the electorate next year, I did not agree with the centralisation of the police and fire service when it was proposed and little has happened since to change my mind.

It is probably too late in practical terms to reverse the process but I do agree with Laurence that it is essential that local control rooms staffed with people with local knowledge are retained or restored.

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Just out of Interest and it may interest someone

When I was a young fireman ( now called firefighters) , I was manning the watch room at Nelson fire station in Lancashire, when I answered a call by Ex. tel . at 0200 hrs on a cold winters night with Snow outside. The caller said there  is smoke coming out of a house , I asked where, he said " next to the yellow door near Jim's barbers shop. Being New to Nelson , I asked for the Street, The guy said " Lawn Street". I hit the General alarm , The Sub Officer took the address and said " No it will be Lorne St,  I know the hairdressers shop"

Just a thought that local knowledge goes a long way. The caller had obviously had a few, and a small fire was put out before it became a big one. Never forgot that day way back in 1963. Not a computer in site.  Not long afterwards the local fire station watch rooms were closed down and  control was moved to Divisional  al HQ, later with computers it went to Brigade HQ at Preston,  The field of control grew wider and wider . Lawn St and Lorne St  they were 5 miles apart.

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Politics apart , I think localities should be allowed to raise funds through local taxation

I can't understand the rational, of preventing local councillors from managing their own budgets. If income remains static,  council workers would never get a rise, councils can't maintain services,  Who in their right mind would stand for election  if held by a ball and chain .

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I think the one nation Police Force is an OK idea, as part of the UK.  In a separate Scotland it may feel the weight of across border crime to be a big problem, extra finances will have to be used to cover measures currently derived from Scotland Yard. I talk of Forensics , top detectives , training schools, communication equipment, standards of investigation , and the like, all covered from London, and would cost a separate force a bundle to buy in. Sometimes bigger is better but it has to be properly managed.

Control rooms( I speak from experience), need to be fairly local to problems. Money saving measures using computers etc are a recipe for mistakes. Going back to the RTA which has caused this uproar, a smaller local control room staffed by people with local knowledge might have averted the problem. The police force in my view is no longer an emergency service. response times are a joke, there is only the Fire Service which comes near to having an instant response. The Scottish government ( whatever the colour) needs to get a grip of policing.

I wasn't aware that Police Scotland were shutting down their forensic services Laurence http://www.spa.police.uk/forensic-services/

As to your other post on local knowledge for firefighters.....in your day it was probably a must but now we have a great invention known as GPS, the mainstay of satellite navigation.

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In Canada we used to have quite a good postal service with home delivery and you could send a letter to Britain which would arrive within 3 days. GPS then meant good postal service .

Then the Feds sold the postal services to a German  firm Deutsches Post  and now the name has changed again. In both cases  with profit now being the main goal of the people who took it over:-  Delivery is not timeous, we don't have home delivery but general mailboxes and a calendar sent  to Inverness will be delivered within 10 days for $49 (say 25 pounds) or for $10 (5 pounds) it will take up to ten weeks.  So GPS now means Generally Putrid Sinkhole or Ghastly Poor service. 

 

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