I read with interest that Northumberland County Council’s concern for their enforcement officers’ health and safety is so critical that they are to arm them with cameras and recording devices due to the fact that they are the subject of ‘many incidents’ of personal abuse.
Since NCC took control of parking in April, they have seen this as an opportunity to raise cash from certain areas of the county and they pursue this with vigour.
They need to ask themselves why it is that all of a sudden decent, ordinary citizens are turning on their staff, after all this did not happen often under the previous parking regime.
The answer is simple. Local people are sick and tired of the injustice of it all.
You can get a caution for burglary these days but are fined £50 for not parking correctly in a bay.
At this austere time when we are all finding it hard to run our businesses or in many cases make ends meet at home, we are constantly penalised by the employees who justify their jobs by looking for trivial offences.
I would like to know why it is that all council departments are being cut but now we have three wardens where we used to have one (revenue gathering maybe).
The local police have been cut by 10 per cent because crime is down but warden numbers are up threefold.
The introduction of these wardens has done absolutely nothing to improve traffic flow or parking conditions.
At this time, there are enough spaces for twice as many cars as we have.
Alnwick is a ghost town on a Sunday and yet there we have our friendly enforcement officer sticking tickets on cars, whose owners were sensible enough to leave them after a Saturday night out. And they wonder why they get abuse!
I have a little advice for NCC which I’m sure they will not take – save some money and send your enforcement officers a P45 or alternatively retrain them, buy them a yellow jacket, a brush, a shovel and a wheelbarrow and ask them to fix the pavements, which are a disgrace.
I wager that you will not need to buy them body cameras then.