Sussex Police to Spend £10,000 on Massages for 'stressed Out' Workers at Emergency Call Centres

by Gopalan on  January 1, 2009 at 12:06 PM Mental Health News   - G J E 4
 Sussex Police to Spend £10,000 on Massages for 'stressed Out' Workers at Emergency Call Centres
Sussex police in UK are to spend £10,000 on office massages for 'stressed out' workers at emergency call centres. But the decision has attracted flak from some quarters.

Brian Stockham, the chairman of the Sussex Police Federation, said it was "outrageous".

He said: 'To spend £10,000 of public money on something like this seems outrageous when there are so many more important things to apply money to in Sussex Police's budget.

'The force is really poor in helping people with mental issues and this is the main cause of long-term sickness, so if we have £10,000 to spend then this is where it should go - especially when Sussex Police us currently 250 officers short.'

He said: "It's all very well that call centre staff get stressed out, but how do they think we feel when we are faced with the blood and guts we face every day.

'If anyone should be getting head massages it should be the bobby on the beat, not the people sitting in warm offices with cups of tea and biscuits.'

Herbert, the Tory MP for Arundel and the South Downs, said: 'This beggars belief.
'I cannot believe that public money is being spent on offering Indian head massages to police or police staff.

He added: 'The £10,000 could be put to some good use rather than being spent on some hippie nonsense about getting your head rubbed.'

Chief Constable Martin Richards defended the plan, saying: 'This is nothing new in organisations where staff are employed in call handling work.

'We recognise that out hard-working staff can be sitting in set positions at their desks for long periods taking calls and dealing with a variety of challenging issues.

'This service (Indian head massage) is a way of relieving pressure.' 

Companies specialising in head massages have until January 9 to bid for the deal.

'At a time when the authority is telling us how strapped for cash they are, you have to question whether this is a responsible use of public money,' wondered a constable.

Source: Medindia

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