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Judicial Review update

Dear Colleagues

Following on from our previous update regarding our pre-action letter to the Government, we have now received a response from the Government's legal department advising us they feel our claim is without merit and if proceedings are issued they will defend.

We have sought further legal advice on this important matter today and our intention is to now formally lodge an application to judicially review on the following grounds:

  • That the Home Secretary abdicated his discretion on the basis of a prior political decision of the Cabinet as a whole to set police pay at a level substantially below whatever the PRRB recommended, and / or treated himself as obliged to comply with a Cabinet view on this matter.

  • That he failed to properly take into account the recommendations of the PRRB and / or unlawfully fettered that statutory discretion he had.

  • That the departure from the PRRB's recommendations, without giving proportionate reasons of serious national importance for doing so, constituted a breach of his duty in determining police remuneration by having considered the PRRB report. In rejecting the recommendations without proportionate reasons from departing from it the determination breached article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights and section 6 of the Human Rights Act 1998.

  • That the Secretary of State breached PFEW's legitimate expectation that the PRRB recommendations would be followed, in the absence or proportionate reasons for doing so.

Papers relating to the Judicial Review will be lodged either late this evening, or tomorrow. Given the legal process that will now take place, it will be some months before we expect any significant update but we strongly feel this challenge is the right course of action for our members, albeit we cannot predict the outcome of any proposed action, so will be important to continue to manage members' expectations.

We will be issuing the following embargoed communication shortly to the media, to be accompanied by an update in our various internal bulletins and via social media from tomorrow. Because of the ongoing legal proceedings we would urge you not to deviate from these lines if you use anything locally. Please do not use anything before tomorrow's embargo is lifted after midnight.

If you have any questions, please do come back to me.


Alex Duncan
National Secretary