Merseyside's Police Commissioner has today responded to the results of the Police Federation's national survey on pay and morale.
More than 27,000 police officers - nearly a quarter of all ranks from constable to chief inspector - took part in the survey which was open between April and May this year.
It revealed that:
- 44.8% of officers worry about the state of their personal finances either every day or almost every day;
- More than one in nine (11.8%) said they never or almost never have enough money to cover all of their essentials;
- 87.9%, do not feel fairly paid considering the stresses and strains of their job;
- 75.7% said they feel financially worse off than they did five years ago.
Responding to the survey, Merseyside's Police Commissioner Jane Kennedy said: "Police officers are feeling increasingly over-stretched, undervalued and under pressure.
“Sadly, the Police Federation's findings come as no surprise.
“Years of cuts to pay and jobs have damaged police morale nation-wide and left officers feeling unappreciated. Police officers put themselves in harm’s way every day to serve the public. With the pressures they face at work it is not right that nearly half of all officers are also worrying about their personal finances. Although the public of Merseyside truly value the police officers and staff who serve them, the Government fails to recognise that by continuing to underfund the Force.
“This survey is more evidence that the Government needs to repair its broken relationship with the police service. What most serving police officers want to see more than anything is more men and women on the ground doing the job. We can't bring that about without Government help."
The Police Federation's recently elected national Chair John Apter, said: “Although this hardly comes as a surprise, the results make grim reading. Our members are clearly suffering from even worse financial pressures than last year, with some appearing to be in dire straits.
“Our members are under immense pressure to deliver, with dwindling resources and rising crime - particularly violent crime - leading to a demand for our services that has never been higher. All they want is to be adequately paid for the job that they do.
“We know officers are struggling and some have had to resort to food vouchers and other welfare schemes. This clearly cannot be right or acceptable that those employed to keep the public safe cannot make ends meet or put food on tables for their families.
“We have continually warned that policing is on the critical list; Government cuts mean fewer officers – 22,000 since 2010 - and the resulting pressure this puts on our members is immense.”