Mike Rolfe

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Michael Rolfe (born 1978) was the National Chair of the British POA until May 2017,[1] and lead figure within the trade union which represents Prison Officers, related grades of staff and others working in secure custodial settings. He stepped down from this position on 3 May 2017 having been selected as a parliamentary candidate for the Labour Party (UK) for the Sittingbourne and Sheppey constituency at the snap general election that took place on Thursday 8 June 2017. However, despite an 11% swing to Labour compared to 2015, Rolfe failed to be elected and finished in second place to the sitting Conservative MP, Gordon Henderson (politician) who was re-elected with a majority of 15,211 votes.[2]

Born 25 January 1978 in Greenwich, South London, son of council worker David Frederick Rolfe (deceased) and retired Secretary Dorothy Jane Mungeam (Rolfe), aged 38 years at the time of taking over as the National Chair of the POA, he was one of the youngest trade union leaders in the United Kingdom.

Rolfe attended Barnes Cray Primary School from 1983-1989, followed by Erith Secondary School in South London from 1989-1994 then attended Bexley College to sit A-Levels. In 1996, Rolfe started his working career, training to become an accountant and progressing quickly as he earned a reputation for hard work, dedication and commitment. However, following his father's premature death aged 57 in 2002, Rolfe quit his job; pursuing more menial employment and became a Prison officer at HM Prison Elmley in 2004.

Rolfe identifies as a socialist, however he was quick to make clear his views are not entirely left wing in an interview with the Morning Star and that he does not share entirely the same political ideology of Democratic Socialists such as Jeremy Corbyn.

Rolfe first found notoriety amongst his colleagues in the Prison Service when he established the popular Facebook page known as 'Know The Danger,' or 'KTD' abbreviated, in May 2013 at a point in which major restructuring took place within the Prison system. These changes have been heavily attributed with the current systematic failures manifesting in the worst reported riots in 25 years during 2016.

Rolfe became a prominent figure during the latter part of 2016 following a string of appearances on BBC News at Ten and various other news outlets forcing the Secretary of State for Justice Elizabeth Truss to concede "serious issues" that would take time to resolve within the Prison estate.

References

  1. ^ "Specialist officers called to Lewes prison to control six-hour riot at notorious jail once described as 'worse than Syria'". The Independent. 29 October 2016.
  2. ^ "Resignation of National Chair Mr Mike Rolfe". www.poauk.org.uk. 2017-05-03. Retrieved 2017-05-04.


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