London Assembly Member says police cuts are “reckless”

At the London Assembly Plenary meeting this week, a motion was passed condemning the £148million cuts that have been forced on the Metropolitan Police’s budget in the next financial year.

Funding to the Metropolitan Police Service has been cut by the Coalition Government by 20 per cent. Over 891 PCSOs are likely to be cut, up to 65 front counters or police stations closed across <city w:st=”on”><place w:st=”on”>London</place></city>, and borough commanders will be merged.

Across <city w:st=”on”><place w:st=”on”>London</place></city> since May 2010, the Met has lost:

1,956 police officers

1,800 PCSOs

Over 1,330 civilian staff

Labour London Assembly Member Murad Qureshi AM said:

“The Met Police is facing a dramatic 20 per cent budget cut and is in dire financial straits. The Coalition Government is cutting the police budget too far and too fast.

 “The Mayor has failed to get a good deal for Londoners from Government and we are now seeing the impact of cuts on our front line services. They are cutting too far and too fast, they need to urgently re-think their plans.

Ends

Notes

Murad Qureshi AM is a <city w:st=”on”><place w:st=”on”>London</place></city> wide Assembly Member

The full text of the motion agreed at the meeting reads as follows: 

“This Assembly notes the recent announcement by the Metropolitan Police that, in an attempt to fill the budget gap resulting from reckless government cuts of 20%, 891 Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) are likely to be cut, up to 65 front counters or police stations closed, and borough commanders merged. Additionally, this Assembly acknowledges that <city w:st=”on”><place w:st=”on”>London</place></city> has already lost 1,956 police officers, 1,800 PCSOs, and over 1,339 civilian staff since May 2010.

 

This Assembly also notes that the Mayor’s revised budget guidance letter dated 19th October 2012, stated that the Metropolitan Police would have to achieve cuts of £148 million next year. Further, that this letter accepted for the first time that the Mayor may not be able to keep his election promise to have 1,000 more police officers in <city w:st=”on”><place w:st=”on”>London</place></city> than when he took office.

 

This Assembly is aware of the conclusion of Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) that frontline policing services could only be preserved if budget cuts were limited to a maximum of 12%.  This Assembly also notes that the Coalition Government has set targets to cut the police budget by 20%.

 

This Assembly therefore urges the Mayor to enter in to urgent negotiations with the Coalition Government to achieve a better settlement for Londoners that would prevent the loss of up to 50% of police station front counters and large numbers of police that the people of London truly value and rely on to keep them safe.”

      3.   The motion was agreed at a meeting of the full Assembly on Wednesday. Watch a webcast of the meeting.