Thursday, 7 October 2010

Ooh, Nurse

I wasn't intending my first post proper after writing again to be a rant. However, I posted a reply to a blog post that turned into such a long one it probably belonged as a post in the first place.

Hogday wrote a post about his medical history during his Police Service, whilst dwelling on the possibility of serving Police Officers having our pension cut or cut back.
It made me think, and I reckon my medical notes (if the job have kept them all) would be interesting reading for me. They'd probably bring back some nasty memories.

I know that I personally have physical scars - with me for the rest of my life - that remind me of some nasty incidents and will continue to do so every time I go swimming or make the mistake of exposing my pallid naked torso to the general public.

I've also had at least one injury that required six months of treatment - although I was back at work days after the injury occurred.

For me the most traumatic have been drugs treatments for HIV/Hepatitis/nasty junky diseases when I've been forcibly exposed to unpleasant bodily fluids.
Months of no sexual contact, no open wounds, scared to kiss family members goodnight in case you infect them with something painful or potentially fatal... a really horrible experience, and it's happened to me twice so far. Despite those not being as long lasting physically (once the all clear has been given) they are definitely the hardest to deal with.

It's not easy being a month into a new relationship and having to have a sit down conversation with your new squeeze and explain that sex, kissing, sharing toothbrushes are all out now, and that I need to check for cuts and scratches before holding hands. It's something that more than one young copper on my team has had to do.

I know people say some of those things are OTT - the holding hands thing for instance - but I'm not alone in taking it that seriously. I've taken the Queen's shilling so I take the hits, but my family and loved ones haven't and shouldn't.

The not insignificant 11% plus that I pay from my pay packet every month is part of the compensation for going through that. We're not in Basra, and I don't pretend to have the same risks as an active serviceman. But we do go towards the dangers, rather than away. We do this voluntarily, and put ourselves, our families, and our friends through the mill numerous times during our career. I don't think our pensions have been gifted to us, we've paid for them in money and sweat.


Joe said...

First? Yay! Good to see you back mate!

Blue Eyes said...

Wow you are keeping us on our toes!


Blue Eyes said...


Joe said...

Ha, you lose!

Blue Eyes said...

"Months of no sexual contact"

Now you know what it's like to live in BEland.

Area Trace No Search said...

Now then kids - it's one all at the moment.

You snooze, you lose...

Joe said...

It may reassure you to know that there have only been two known instances of contamination with HIV from needle sticks in the entire of the NHS.
PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) is used in a lot of cases where there has been a real risk of seroconversion with HIV, which reduces the risk from somewhere around 10-20% to less than 1%.

A physical injury is much easier to deal with in the head than the idea of a more permanent illness.
If you get cut, you can see the injury, and you can feel it. The idea of some strange mutations going on inside you is going to be much harder to deal with, and it's a sorry state of affairs that people who intentionally try to "convert" people aren't charged with very serious offences.

I can completely understand your reluctance to come into physical contact with your loved ones. The risk might be minimal, but as an officer you're trained to try and risk assess dynamically in your head, and it's no surprise that you would see that as too big a risk to take.

Aimee said...

Gees, where do you work! Sounds very dangerous. You've certainly had some traumas. Hope you are ok, Chins up!

Did you watch DCI Banks the other week? So not going into any cellars now.

TonyF said...

Hi ATNS! glad to see you are posting again.

I would rather be shot at again by PIRA than the feckless fuckers from the swamp. I wouldn't don your uniform for anything.

Blue Eyes said...

TonyF couldn't agree more. I'll stick to the safety of the pin-stripe myself. Being hit by a bus on the Strand after a tortuously boozy "business" lunch is one thing, but getting HIV from a bite from a customer.

What I'm trying to say is that those on the actual front line are very much underpaid.

Anonymous said...

Oh Area. I know that feeling all too well, and even when you get the all clear it's not something that ever leaves you, the fact that someone could give you a life sentence, but the penalty would not be reciprocated. That feeling of being a walking talking time bomb, puts you on the other side of a massive ravine of violation.

Put like that, Police are paid a pittance. But I don't think the general public are really aware of the dangers that officers face day in day out, nor would they probably want to be. Most people I know outside the job would list dangers as things like guns and knives, and never give a thought to how many ways there are to hurt someone without a weapon.

Glad that you are writing again!

Lola x

The Blue Light Run said...

Nice work. Great to see you back ATNS.

Rach said...

Good to have you back and what a brilliant post and no one should ever have to go through what you guys do!

Your worth every penny of your pensions and more..xx

Deceangli said...

I realise that this won't be a popular comment, but it needs saying. The police pension - and many other public sector pensions - has been wrong for decades.

I realise you make a big contribution - 11% - and that the system was set up to allow officers to retire while they're relatively young, which is a very sensible approach.

The problem is that the pension is simply too generous. Your 11% doesn't touch the sides, compared with what gets paid out. If you had been putting that money into the sort of schemes available to those of us in the private sector (and no, we're not all millionaire bankers), you'd receive vastly less than the sum you will actually end up with.

So I applaud the current government taking a hard look at this stuff. It should have been done 30 years ago, when it wouldn't have been as painful. And if they leave it too long, the pain will simply increase.

Sorry to be a naysayer on this issue.

Anonymous said...

Have to disagree. I and many others in the public sector have been honouring our side of the contract for years (in my case 18). So how exactly is it fair that we are being told that we can't have what we actually paid for? The contract that we had is not bring honoured. There would be uproar if a private company did that.
Not a copper, but I have taken my fair share of abuse over that time. Abused, assualted and spat on.... I do my job and pay into my pension. In another 25 years (it was only 20 but the goal posts moved) I will expect the pension that I contributed to. If it wasn't theirs to sell to me, well that is plain dishonest. Rant over.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
MTG said...

Inspector Gadget Says:

September 11, 2010 at 10:15 am
I guess you will be upset when I appear on GMTV soon, publish the second book and sell the new tee shirts then? LOL.

MTG Says:

October 19, 2010 at 1:41 pm
Not really, Gadget. An evil man profits in his acts to his own shame.

Stressed Out Cop said...

Welcome Back - I'll pop in when back in the groove.

As for the injury list - mine is very long and at times amusing.

My favourite was when chasing a drink driver who'd just been released on a blood option and threw his sample at me as he left the station (it was boxed).

I chased him for a few hundred yards before I suddenly stopped moving, due to my storno radio lead wrapping itself round my legs.

One hole in my new trousers (always happens when new)and a bigger one in my knee. Oh how we laughed including naughty bloke who revisited custody again.

Area Trace No Search said...

MTG - one warning and one only. Do not use this blog to have a pop at other bloggers; I've said time and again on this blog that I am fair game as I have put this up for people to see.

Anyone else is off limits. There are places to go other than here to complain or raise issue with other bloggers and commentators.

MTG said...

Try a few spoonfuls of old fashioned Peelian nonsense to counteract the depressing and humourless effects this job is having upon you.

MTG said...

Should these few spoonfuls fail then try the long jump from a motorway bridge; not forgetting one's laptop and very important blog.

Dr Melvin (Banned from police blogs) Gray said...


Recent events unfold deep hostility of a very disaffected public towards Gestapo methods of an out-of-control police. Successive governments have mistakenly allowed the proliferation of bullies within this public service. The middle class stood by, merely tutting here and there but rules are changing.

There will be no formal announcement of the inevitable police cleansing. Those Chief officers shielding the likes of Gadget, Bloggs and 200 will face the axe themselves. This will begin closure of the UK’s maverick police blogs and herald the creation of the working relationship between police and public, expected within a democracy.

Every rogue police officer who abused position in any way, or assisted corrupt colleagues to evade justice, or stirred hatred on a blog with cowardly anonymity, will be identified. UK Citizens have the moral right to this information and every moral right to reject by any means if necessary, a State Police growing ever more maniacal.

Anonymous said...

TonyF couldn'tCheapest wow gold concur much more. I'm going to continue with the safe practices in the pin-stripe myself. Currently being reach by way of a shuttle bus within the String from a tortuously Buy rs goldboozy "business" lunch break is one area, yet obtaining Aids at a mouthful at a client.

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