Chief constables err on the side of caution rather than abandon outright G4S privatisation deal

THREE police forces- including Cambridgeshire- have not abandoned privatisation of 1,100 back office jobs but after today it is unclear if G4S will get the multi million pound contract.

Chief constables of Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire police met against the backdrop of the Olympics debacle which has seen G4S publicly humiliated after failing to deliver enough civilian security staff.

A statement from the chief constables said today’s meeting dealt with “concerns regarding G4S’s ability to deliver.”

They have now set up a working party “to explore the ability of the contract and contractor to meet the specific needs of Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire”.

The outcome of this work will be discussed in mid August and if G4S do not prove their worth “a recommendation would be brought to police authorities to progress the bespoke procurement of a commercial provider to deliver organisational support services.

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“This would allow incoming Police and Crime Commissioners to consider this approach post November.”

Put simply there is no immediate plan to abandon the idea of privatisation but it is clear G4S will need to work hard to regain trust among the three forces they can still deliver the proposed contract.

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ICT, finance, communications, legal services and procurement are among many departments the forces are considering handing over to the private sector.

Julian Huppert, the Liberal Democrat MP for Cambridge has agreed it is “right that they look very carefully at this proposal given what we have found out about G4S over the security of the Olympics.”

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