August 15th, 2008

Privileged Knowledge

Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

Working in the Control Room, you’re always first to know just about anything which goes on in the force; it’s the rumour-monger’s dream.

The first time I did a stint in there a few years ago I was amazed at what was going on around the area, stuff I never got to hear being on a shift somewhere.

You get to know about most of the complaints about people; they invariably come in over the phone & before they get directed to a supervisor or Professional Standards Dept, everyone gets to have a look at the log to see who’s been doing what.

An awful lot of complaints are total rubbish. They’re made by people who don’t like being caught out or humiliated when they’ve been dealt with for doing something stupid or for not getting their way. I guess it’s the old attack being the best form of defence thing. There are lots of serial complainers.

Then there are the complaints where you look at it and suck your teeth in that mechanic giving you a quote kind of way & you think, hmm, probably shouldn’t have done that.

I suppose, to balance the books back in favour of the ‘customers’ there are also police officers whose names regularly appear on the complaint logs. The ones who always get complaints about they way they talk to people, for instance.

I’m surprised some of the staff in the Control Room don’t get more complaints, having said that I;m trying to think of any that have had complaints made against them, which surprises me somewhat givent he propensity of some people to make complaints against officers out there. I mean, the conversations on the phone you overhear, I’m not sure how some people get away with it. When the stress levels rise, so does the voice & the patience drops leading to some very animated remarks.

Some of the complaints that come in you’d really rather not know. I’ve seen people ringing in giving pretty intimate detail about officers’ private lives, allegations of criminal behaviour, stuff you really hope is just made up, but sometimes isn’t.

You also get to know all the jobs about the ‘celebrities’ in the area. As soon as a log comes in involving someone famous, word spreads round & everyone wants to know who it is & what they’re doing. You’d be amazed at some of the stuff that goes on, well I am.

There’s not really much point to this entry. I didn’t have an idea for today’s entry so I just started with a thought and saw where it took me. It’s taken me here so I’m off to watch the Olympics.

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  1. Plodnomore says:

    During my incerceration in the Control Room I beame aware of a serial complainer who would phone up to tell us that there were a group of kids ‘hanging about’ on th street corner and he wanted them moved; the man down the street was ‘loudly starting his motorcycle in a threatening manner’ (true) or on several occasions when the Police helicopter was up and about that the noise was preventing him from watching his favourite television programmes. He usually ended up by saying that he had lived in that street for so many years and had never seen a Policeman there. On a night shift, the local traffic unit picked up on a stolen car which failed to stop. Several other units became involved in trying to block off the car and, you’ve guessed it, it ended up stopped in this man’s street (it was about 0430 hrs). One of the operators who had only a week or so before retiring phoned this man up and after introducing himself said, “You know you often tell us you’ve never seen a Police officer in your street. Well, if you look out of your bedroom window you’ll see seven!” He wished him good night and put the phone down. By the time the complaint had been received, recorded and passed to the appripriate department, my colleague had retired. It showed that even in the crappiest jobs you can find something funny.

    August 16th, 2008 at 10:22

  2. Tony F says:

    I would just like to say the weather has been a tad inclement, and I wish to complain.

    Actually, this reminds me of a chap whom tripled the complaints about aircraft noise. He had moved under Manchester’s flight path. It was there before he was borne, but….

    August 16th, 2008 at 20:24

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