Police officers looking for interpreters for ALS or when will ALS's phone get answered?
I had a call from a PC from West Yorkshire Police a few days ago. He said he got my number from a colleague and was hoping that I worked for ALS/Capita and could help them that night. He was very disappointed when I refused, he said he would have to call ALS now and ask them to find someone.
I thought the whole point of using an agency was so that officers don’t have to ring around trying to book an interpreter, the agency does that for them. However, I also know from another PC from West Yorkshire Police that when they ring ALS and ask for an interpreter to interview someone, ALS's first question is what time the suspect was arrested, apparently they then work out if it’s an "urgent" request.
I am told 2-3-4 hours later ALS rings back and tells them that they can send someone in 3-4 hours’ time or in the morning, etc. And this is still no guarantee that the interpreter will turn up when promised.
So the poor officer who rang me was hoping I would say “yes”, jump in the car like I used to and be there in 45 minutes, finish the job even before ALS answers their phone...