Traffic wardens, who are reluctant to reveal their identities for obvious reasons, have been blowing the whistle on ‘ticketing targets’ set by local councils.
The wardens say they face disciplinary action or even the sack if they don’t hand out enough tickets during a shift. At one council, the target is apparently 15 tickets in a seven hour shift. Not only that, they are required to increase the number of tickets they hand out to cover any overtime they might work.
The Council insists that they do not ‘set targets’, they have ‘performance indicators’ and offer guidance to agency staff on what is expected of them if they hope to be eligible for any overtime working that may become available.
Some traffic wardens say the requirement has gradually gone up from 9 tickets every seven hours to 12 tickets and now to 15 tickets.
‘In order that the council obtains best value from its agency workers, in order to make best use of council taxpayers’ money the parking operation is self-funded, as required by the Traffic Management Act 2004. The council has outlined key performance indicators for penalty charge notices issued by agency staff, to enable them to qualify for overtime.’
Fair enough, if people are illegally parked, block the road, disrupt traffic or whatever, then maybe they deserve a ticket. And should get one. But if they are snared into traps or where common sense goes by the board to achieve ‘targets’ then that’s another matter.
Targets are for archers, shooters and other sportsmen, financial institutions and businesses and for personal ambition, they have no place in law enforcement as they only lead to misuse and abuse.
Most people would probably be less concerned about such things if there was a bit of honesty, rather than the manipulation of words, denials and subterfuge. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, then it IS A DUCK!