No more cuts in frontline officers.
Everyone I speak to, including police officers, say the same thing – WE NEED MORE POLICE OFFICERS INSTEAD OF PCSO’s. All respect to PCSO’s, but they don’t have the powers the law gives to a police officer. The Labour candidate has cut officer numbers and wants to recruit more PCSO’s. That just doesn’t make any sense. Instead, this is what I will do and this does make sense:
⦁ Remember the 40 jobs announced last month? 7 PC’s 23 PCSO’s and 10 staff? I will cancel that decision and recruit a minimum of 30 PC’s + the 10 staff but only if that staff is essential otherwise we recruit more PC’s instead.
⦁ We already have 132 PCSO’s. I will replace at least 100 of them with police officers. I will not force anyone out of a job – absolutely not. I will achieve this through a combination of natural staff turnover and recruitment into PC posts.
⦁ That is at least 130 more “ Bobbies on the beat,” which means less crime: more criminals get caught. That’s basics and the best way to protect the public: prevent them from becoming a victim in the first place.
⦁ Police rank structure is top heavy; I will remove one complete tier in middle management [it’s been done before], with a view to removing a second. Every one of these posts can fund up to two PC’s on the frontline – we need more on the frontline and fewer sitting behind a desk.
⦁ Streamlined procedures and use of mobile technology will put officers where we need them, “out on the beat” more of the time. This has already been used to huge effect in other forces.
All of that can and will be delivered in the present budget and all without cutting any other services.