POLL: Should Haringey's Special Constables receive 50 per cent council tax discount?

Hornsey and Wood Green MP Lynne Featherstone and Haringey Liberal Democrats have called on Haringey Borough Council to give Special Constables a 50 per cent council tax discount.

They believe the discount would reward existing special constables and encourage more people to volunteer and help the police fight crime.

Special Constables spend up to 16 hours a month volunteering with the police - all without pay - in order to help make communities safer.

But sceptics have pointed out that other volunteers in the borough may give just as much time and receive no discount - and that an incentive goes against the spirit of volunteering.

There are currently 62 Specials in the borough and if they are all in tax band D it would cost the council around £46,000 to give the discount.

Do you have other ideas about who should get discounts? Leave your comments below.

Comments (9)

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9:00am Tue 11 Feb 14

Terry365 says...

This is daft.

Up until now, Special Constables have volunteered for purely altruistic reasons. If this is passed, they will volunteer with an ulterior motive, a substantial sum of money.

Why turn public spirited citizens into paid mercenaries, joining up purely for monetary gain? Watch the recruit quality plummet.

Beware the law of unintended consequences, Haringey.
This is daft. Up until now, Special Constables have volunteered for purely altruistic reasons. If this is passed, they will volunteer with an ulterior motive, a substantial sum of money. Why turn public spirited citizens into paid mercenaries, joining up purely for monetary gain? Watch the recruit quality plummet. Beware the law of unintended consequences, Haringey. Terry365

9:29am Tue 11 Feb 14

mark312 says...

Terry - this policy works successfully in other parts of the country. Unless you think people in Haringey are particularly mean-spirited and money-grabbing, there's no reason to think it won't work just as well in Haringey too.
Terry - this policy works successfully in other parts of the country. Unless you think people in Haringey are particularly mean-spirited and money-grabbing, there's no reason to think it won't work just as well in Haringey too. mark312

11:04am Tue 11 Feb 14

robertorobles says...

Terry, I don't think 90p an hour qualifies as mercenary pay. But it sends the right message to those volunteers and is a cost-effective measure to make our streets safer. The policy is already in place elsewhere.
Terry, I don't think 90p an hour qualifies as mercenary pay. But it sends the right message to those volunteers and is a cost-effective measure to make our streets safer. The policy is already in place elsewhere. robertorobles

1:41pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Seema Chandwani says...

robertorobles - this statement: "The policy is already in place elsewhere".

Where? That is very inaccurate...
robertorobles - this statement: "The policy is already in place elsewhere". Where? That is very inaccurate... Seema Chandwani

1:47pm Tue 11 Feb 14

mark312 says...

It's not inaccurate, it's absolutely true - other local councils in England do this.
It's not inaccurate, it's absolutely true - other local councils in England do this. mark312

1:55pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Seema Chandwani says...

It is totally inaccurate to state it happens "everywhere"... A few other councils may do it, such as Hull or Kent, but it is most certainly not EVERYWHERE.
It is totally inaccurate to state it happens "everywhere"... A few other councils may do it, such as Hull or Kent, but it is most certainly not EVERYWHERE. Seema Chandwani

4:42pm Tue 11 Feb 14

walky88 says...

@Seema Yes it is totally inaccurate to state it happens "everywhere" - which is why he said "elsewhere" - and you even quoted it as such!

I know Haringey Labour likes to big up the whole "People's Republic" thing, but does that *really* have to involve changing history and the meaning of words, 1984 style?
@Seema Yes it is totally inaccurate to state it happens "everywhere" - which is why he said "elsewhere" - and you even quoted it as such! I know Haringey Labour likes to big up the whole "People's Republic" thing, but does that *really* have to involve changing history and the meaning of words, 1984 style? walky88

5:04pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Cwcomm says...

Well a massive debate among school governors as to whether they should receive some payment ended with overwhelming rejection of the idea; it was felt strongly that school governing was a community/voluntary sertvice and payment would detract from that and also run the risk of encouraging people in it for the money.

Also, I understand from a former special constable I spoke to recently that the majority of specials intend to join the police full time and most go on to do so, using their time as a special to gain experience of the job and demonstrate their commitment. It seems unlikely therefore that a small payment like this would radically improve recruitment.

I can understand the desire of the local police to supplement their ranks, since numbers are now falling below May 2010 levels; maybe the answer is to look at recruitment routes overall rather than gestures like this?
Well a massive debate among school governors as to whether they should receive some payment ended with overwhelming rejection of the idea; it was felt strongly that school governing was a community/voluntary sertvice and payment would detract from that and also run the risk of encouraging people in it for the money. Also, I understand from a former special constable I spoke to recently that the majority of specials intend to join the police full time and most go on to do so, using their time as a special to gain experience of the job and demonstrate their commitment. It seems unlikely therefore that a small payment like this would radically improve recruitment. I can understand the desire of the local police to supplement their ranks, since numbers are now falling below May 2010 levels; maybe the answer is to look at recruitment routes overall rather than gestures like this? Cwcomm

7:00pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Seema Chandwani says...

walky88 wrote:
@Seema Yes it is totally inaccurate to state it happens "everywhere" - which is why he said "elsewhere" - and you even quoted it as such!

I know Haringey Labour likes to big up the whole "People's Republic" thing, but does that *really* have to involve changing history and the meaning of words, 1984 style?
You are right, you did say elsewhere and not everywhere.. my mistake.
[quote][p][bold]walky88[/bold] wrote: @Seema Yes it is totally inaccurate to state it happens "everywhere" - which is why he said "elsewhere" - and you even quoted it as such! I know Haringey Labour likes to big up the whole "People's Republic" thing, but does that *really* have to involve changing history and the meaning of words, 1984 style?[/p][/quote]You are right, you did say elsewhere and not everywhere.. my mistake. Seema Chandwani

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