Five police forces including Devon and Cornwall Police have been taken to an employment tribunal yesterday accused of age discrimination charges.
The tribunal is hearing cases on behalf of more than 250 former officers over “Regulation A19” which compels those who have served 30 years to retire.
The five police stations which are facing tribunal are the Nottinghamshire, West Midlands, Devon and Cornwall, North Wales and South Wales.
The officers involved are seeking compensation for unfair dismissal. It is also believed that some of the officers may seek for re-instatement.
The case is being brought by three parties - Nottinghamshire Police Federation, Devon and Cornwall Police Federation and the Police Superintendents Association of England and Wales (PSAEW).
The Nottinghamshire Police Federation is bringing two to three test cases on behalf of 153 former officers, while Devon and Cornwall has a similarly small number of test cases for 86 of its members.
The PSAEW said it would bring test cases against all five forces on behalf of 22 superintendents and chief superintendents.
They argued that as crown servants police officers cannot be subjected to employment redundancy but under the A19 regulation they can be retired on the grounds of efficiency. The regulation had been used by several forces to cope up with significant funding cuts.
Phil Matthews’s chairman of Nottinghamshire Police Federation said that it was a wholesale discrimination where large numbers of workforce was being redundant with no compensation other than their pension, which they are entitled to anyway, to fall back on.
He added that it was age discrimination and the force believes that the regulation was being used to balance its books rather than for the individual efficiencies that it was designed for.
Nottinghamshire Police said it would "vigorously oppose the unfair dismissal claim", while North Wales Police said it was not in a position to comment because proceedings were under way..