Proposals by three police forces to let controversial firm G4S take control of their back office staff have been scrapped – but privatisation plans could still go ahead.
Herts, Beds and Cambs forces were looking at merging their IT and human resources departments.
G4S came under fire last year after it failed to deliver 10,400 security guards in time for the Olympics.
But police chiefs deny this is why they scrapped plans to let it run the merged services.
The forces had hoped that they could save £73m by the move, which they have been looking into since June last year.
This would have included a saving of about £36m for Herts Police. It is thought that the move would have affected 1,100 staff across the three forces – including 500 in Herts.
But Herts police and crime commissioner David Lloyd said: “I still believe that substantial elements of policing support services will be best delivered by the private sector and will ensure that this option is immediately pursued.”
It is something that the force’s Unison branch is fiercely opposed to – a petition by the trade union opposing the plan has gained 388 signatures.
Unison branch chairman Steph Raddings was in talks with Mr Lloyd this morning, Wednesday, shortly after the scrapping of the G4S contract was announced.
The three forces began looking at the G4S option after the firm was handed a 10-year contract for the same work by Lincolnshire Police.
But Andrew White, who heads up the Herts commissioner’s office team, said this was more complicated as it involved three different forces.
He said: “That added an enormous amount of complexity to the work.
“We are a long way away from the Olympics now and always said that this would be run by a different part of G4S.
“This would be a taking and transferring of our staff rather than recruiting from scratch as the company did during the Olympics.”