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At a meeting on 30th October the Mayor of London’s Office for Policing and Crime confirmed that the Metropolitan Police is starting to feel the effects of a 20% cut in funding from central government.
New Scotland Yard will be sold off, 891 Police Community Support Officers will be lost and up to 65 police stations will go to be replaced with “contact points”.
Last week it was revealed that Boris Johnson, the Conservative Mayor of London, might not be able to keep his election promise to have 1,000 more police officers in London than when he took office. Boris Johnson wrote to the Metropolitan Police asking them to come up with their final proposals for cutting £148million next year from their budget. In the same letter he said he would consider options that would mean missing his target to have 1,000 more police officers in London.
Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) stated that the government could cut the policing budget by 12% and not hit front line services, but the government have cut the policing budget by 20%.
No decisions have yet been made locally in Hackney. It is not yet clear what impact the cuts will have on police numbers. The police are committed to maintaining at least one 24 hour police station and Hackney will have its own senior police team including the borough commander.
Labour’s Hackney crime lead, Cllr Sophie Linden said:
“I am very worried that the government’s drastic cuts to the police budget will put at risk the significant reductions in crime that Hackney has seen over the last 10 years. We have a very good partnership with the police that has seen crime fall by 30% in the last ten years, with over 12,000 fewer victims of crime.
“It isn’t clear yet what the actual impact on police numbers will be in Hackney, but we will be fighting to ensure that police numbers are maintained and that Safer Neighbourhood Teams remain the strong local link for residents.
“We are seeking assurances on the number of residents who use the 3 police stations in Hackney. We want a commitment not just to a minimum of one 24 hour station but to a good day time counter service available for all residents in the borough.”
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