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Wednesday, 20 April 2011

"The JEP Writes Tribute To The Clown Prince"

Our Clown Prince
HOME Affairs Minister Ian Le Marquand made little attempt to mince his words when he explained why more senior police officers have been recruited from the UK. He said that there were no ‘suitable’ local officers to step into any of the four top jobs which needed to be filled.
Senator Le Marquand was equally blunt when he said that he did not want a repetition of the mistakes made by the Island force in dealing with the Haut de la Garenne inquiry or the Curtis Warren case.
A major part of the Senator’s ministerial responsibility is to see that the Island is policed adequately and effectively. It no doubt took a degree of personal and political courage to make it clear so publicly that there were no acceptable candidates in the ranks of the States police for the posts that had to be filled. In addition, the Senator will have been fully aware that his decision and his statement would not endear him to those officers who have missed promotion – or, indeed, many of their colleagues.
In spite of difficulties that he might now face in dealing with rank and file officers, he is to be applauded not only for grasping a particularly prickly nettle but also for speaking out so frankly.
There are, however, steps which must now be taken at the political and at force level to limit future recruitment from the UK. Essentially, this means that training and staff development procedures that appear to have failed in recent years must be revised. It is anything but unreasonable to expect the most senior positions in the force to be filled by natural progression through the hierarchy if talent is spotted and fostered properly. This process has worked in the past and there are no reasons why it should not work in the future.
Meanwhile, although Senator Le Marquand chose to speak of a lack of suitable candidates in a way which focused attention on the possible shortcomings of individuals, the issues at the heart of the promotion problem are likely to have far more to do with the system in which officers have operated rather than with the officers themselves.
As the Jersey Police Association has pointed out, employing people from the UK offers no guarantee of effective policing if the correct structures, checks and balances are not in place. We should remember that whereas the Curtis Warren irregularities were a home-grown complication, the fiasco of Haut de la Garenne was the responsibility of senior personnel who were appointed on the supposed strength of experience and abilities that were ultimately found lacking.


  1. Ian.

    The good old (desperate) JEP still churning out the establishment line in spite of compelling evidence to the contrary.

    Still churning out lines like " the fiasco of Haut de la Garenne " despite the ACPO Reports NPIA Reports and so on. The JEP have no idea how much more they become mis-trusted and laughed at when they churn this tripe out.

    Is it any wonder their readership is dwindling while Blogs are thriving?

  2. "A major part of the Senator’s ministerial responsibility is to see that the Island is policed adequately and effectively."

    SO, when is he going to start?

    Or does he class letting four Jersey Police Officers off perjury charges as "adequately & effectively" ???

  3. Someone needs to tell the JEP that writing stuff like " the fiasco of Haut de la Garenne " will just lose them even more of their dwindling readership. Anyone who has access to the internet knows this isn't true.

  4. I have two comments to make, one is that I really dislike the way the JEP refers to Haute De La Garenne as a fiasco. This is disgraceful labelling, its akin to saying all the child abuse issues that came to the forefront recently are a complete fiasco. Unfortunately, as the only newspaper in the island what they say is read by many. I think they are no better than the Sun etc but at least with those newpapers they have opposing newspapers that will report things very differently. People forget that what is reported is the JEPs opinion.

    The other thing I would mention is that it's al well and good moaning that UK chiefs are being brought in but without UK chiefs we would have carried on covering up child abuse issues. What I mean by this is that our government wouldn't be covering up the issues after they were investigated but with using police from Jersey going up the ranks there is the possibility that there would not have been a child abuse enquiry to cover up. It would have been covered up before it got to that stage as has been evident in the last 30,40,50 or more years. I think we need outsiders when its been proven that insiders have not done their job competantly. Although, in fairness the problem probably lies with the AG not pressing charges, mates of mates and all that.

    Last comment, I promise! I notice yet again that our Jersey Evening Propaganda does not mention newsworthy material such as whose department in the government signed off expenses or signed off the bugging operation in the Curtis Warren case. If they could find their way to actually explain those little, not worth mentioning perculiarities then perhaps the majority of their readership might realise that its not as simple as they are so happy to blurt out.

    Sorry for the long moan.


  5. Thank you Paul

    With just, and reasoned opinion such as that, you are welcome to blurt as much as you like.

  6. Tom Gruchy says:

    Your readers might not be aware that The Ed & Home Affairs Scrutiny Panel has an ongoing review of Succession Planning within the States of J Police.
    Most of the hearings took place in October 2010 and the Panel is composed of Deputies Le Herissier, T. Pitman, Tadier and Macon.
    The Report is supposedly currently being drafted but recent events might/ought to delay it because the terms of reference allow for consideration of any further issues that may arise in the course of the review....

    Minister Le Marquand stated that there was no succession policy planning (in October) except that agreed by the old Defence Committee - but he was working on one!

    Graham Power submitted his own 22 pages (75 paras) memorandum dated 6 March 2011 - so it is doubtful if the Panel has digested that yet.

    The States Police submitted a "briefing document" of 35 pages which includes some previous reports from the 1990s.

    These can be read under the Submissions section on the panel's web-site of the Ed & Home Affairs page (see scrutiny and look around).

    Transcripts of hearings are also there as are other details - so there can be no excuse for any ill-informed comments on the blogs in future.

    Whether a small Police force like Jersey's can ever aspire to have in place a training scheme to raise senior officers locally is doubtful.

    The reality is that Jersey wants senior/chief officers with all the shiny buttons who tick all the right image boxes - but these cannot be obtained through running an under-funded force of just 225 officers.

    Chief (Constables) Officers from the UK generally run forces of 2,000 uniformed officers plus with similar numbers of office staff and budgets that might be about half of Jersey Government's entire expenditure.

    Jersey's is a Mr. Mouse operation and it's a wonder that any senior officers would want to come here at all.

    So if it's white shirts and bicycles we want in Jersey the new man has made a good start.
    But how he will cope with the political interference if he proposes any more serious reforms - time will tell.

  7. He will not get any political interference, aslong as he doesnot interfere in politics.

    Aslong as he sticks with white shirts and bicycles and doesnot make any fuss....

    He will be well accepted by the present ruling politicians!?

  8. I am a survivor of the Staffordshire Pindown home child abuse, and the Pindown system used there was exactly the same as the Grand Prix system used at Haut de la Garenne, in fact, children from Pindown homes in the West Midlands were sent to Haut de la Garenne.

    I was told by someone from another Pindown home this week that the police have told her that the Staffordshire Pindown abuse has been "discredited". I am trying to find out further information about this at the moment.

    I posted something about how dodgy journalists have been used to discredit the Haut de la Garenne child abuse. I discovered that some of these journalists belong to not for profit charities, which promote the lifework of an American self confessed paedophile called Ralph Underwager, and whose aim is to defend people who have been accused of child abuse. The details of all this are in a blogpost on Zoompads Blog, Richard Webster.