A West Midlands Police officer claims he was “bullied and victimised” after making whistle blowing allegations about the health and safety of fellow officers.
Pc James Griffin expressed “serious concerns about the unsafe system of work across the police force”, a Birmingham Employment Tribunal heard. He is seeking compensation from West Mids Police over his treatment.
The officer, the local police federation health and safety rep and deputy secretary of the health and safety welfare committee, said he was “fobbed off” by managers and officers banned from talking to the press.
Pc Griffin, a police officer for 21 years, said he had accused the force of breaching its legal obligation over staffing levels, both in the local policing unit and out on the streets. He had complained about a lack of cover when officers were off sick or on courses.
“The situation had affected the police’s ability to process and respond to incidents in a safe and efficient manner.
“Police officers suffered from work overload and stress, did not have refreshment breaks and shift pattern changes did not work,” he alleged.
He claimed he was a victim of subtle bullying and victimisation by senior staff after making his whistle blowing disclosures.
“I felt isolated and not allowed to attend meetings – yet police officers are being exposed to serious injury and death because of health and safety failings,” he added.
“One police officer had asked me how long it would be until an officer got killed because we did not have enough officers on duty to provide a back up,” Pc Griffin said in his statement.
Charles Crowe opposed the compensation claim on behalf of the respondents.
The hearing, in front of Judge Mr Alan McCarry, will last several days and will call officers to give evidence.