Sussex Police retirement policy to be lifted

Sussex Police is to lift its policy of making officers with 30 years service retire as part of savings following the departure of 85 staff.

The force has asked Sussex Police Authority (SPA) to rescind the scheme later this year to allow "a modest recruitment of officers" in 2013.

SPA approved the legislation, under regulation A19 of the Police Pensions Regulations 1987, in May 2011.

The police authority will make a final decision on the policy on 31 May.

Sussex Police, which is attempting to save £50m in total by 2015, wants to recruit 30 new officers from the 98 candidates it has kept in its recruitment pool.

'Higher savings'

Director of human resources Marion Fanthorpe said: "It is with regret that we have had to lose a number of excellent officers, however it has been crucial for us to be able to make the necessary level of savings needed by 2015, given the rates of natural turnover of police officers.

"Along with faster than expected progress on making savings, we have also found higher levels of savings from areas other than direct post reductions than we originally anticipated.

"Our overall estimate of numbers of officer posts that we will need to reduce by has now been revised down from 500 to 400 and of staff posts from 550 to 450."

She added: "In light of this progress Sussex Police is proposing to the SPA that the Force is in a financial position to end the use of regulation A19 from end of September 2012.

"As we now estimate the number for post reductions to be lower than originally estimated, this will allow for some modest recruitment of officers before 2015"

Regulation A19 states that police officers can be "required to retire" if their retention would "not be in the general interests of efficiency".

Other police forces across the country have also implemented the legislation.

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