As shocking new analysis shows huge reductions in staffing for neighbourhood policing in the West Midlands, Preet Kaur Gill, MP for Birmingham Edgbaston has backed Labour’s plans that would see 15-20 extra neighbourhood police in every single constituency.
Labour has pledged to bring back neighbourhood policing by putting 13,000 more neighbourhood police on Britain’s streets. Labour’s plans are the equivalent of giving every constituency in England and Wales 15-20 extra neighbourhood police - formed of officers, PCSOs, and Specials.
The announcement comes as the most recent crime statistics for the West Midlands show a 71% increase in reported robbery since 2015 and more worryingly, knife crime in the West Midlands stands at the highest rate anywhere outside of London with a 115% increase from 2015 to the end of 2022.
Preet Kaur Gill, MP for Birmingham Edgbaston said, “Policing cannot be done on the cheap – whether in terms of funding or Officer numbers. Fewer Police means victims feel let down, fewer criminals face justice, communities feel under threat and public confidence in the Police falls. In my constituency, residents too often tell me that they never see a police officer on the beat. Given that crime and anti-social behaviour has soared, 20 extra neighbourhood police would double the number of Police across the constituency and reduce crime on a scale that we haven’t seen since the last Labour Government.
“This is why I wrote to the Home Secretary, Suella Braverman MP, to ask what she would say to my constituents who are deeply fearful for their communities and when my constituency and region will see Police and PSCO numbers increased? I look forward to receiving her response however, I fear that we won’t begin to see any reduction in crime or anti-social behaviour until we have a General Election and secure our next Labour Government.”
Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper MP said, “The Tories have completely decimated neighbourhood policing, leaving our communities without the protection they need.
“Knife crime has shot up putting young lives at risk, meanwhile antisocial behaviour is blighting town centres and local communities. But the neighbourhood police who could prevent crimes like this and support victims have disappeared.
“Labour has a serious plan to bring back neighbourhood policing, with a fully funded package for 13,000 extra neighbourhood police on our streets. The last Labour government brought in neighbourhood policing, and now, after more than a decade of Tory neglect, we will restore it.”
Notes to editors:
Police workforce, year to March 2022 - https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/police-workforce-england-and-wales-31-march-2022 (Tables F1, F3)
Police workforce, year to March 2016 - https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/police-workforce-england-and-wales-31-march-2016 (Tables F1, F3)
Crime in England and Wales, police force area data tables (Year to Sept 2022 and Year to Sept 2015) - https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/crimeandjustice/datasets/policeforceareadatatables
Labour’s extra officers will be funded through a Police Efficiency & Collaboration programme, establishing:
Centralised standard-setting for procurement (at least £225m);
Increased collaboration on shared services and specialist functions (at least £145m).