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Policing in Coventry is under threat from the Tory Lib Dem coalition

Bob Ainsworth MP said

“Bobbies on the beat make us all feel safer in our homes and communities. Neighbourhood policing relies on having policing teams on our streets protecting our communities, fighting crime and listening to residents’ concerns

“At the election I stood on a Labour Party Manifesto that committed to halving the deficit by making some tough choices.  But we prioritised the police and committed to maintaining police funding. 

“The Tories made no such commitment, despite warm words from David Cameron during the campaign. In opposition the Lib Dems called for 3,000 more police officers. 

“Both parties have let you down. One of the first acts of the new coalition was to slash the police budget for this year; a reduction of £7m in the West Midlands. The same budget which they supported in the run up to the General Election.

“Now the police are being asked to make additional budget cuts.  In the West Midlands this means cuts of over 1,000 civilian staff who support the police and cuts of 1,250 police officers.  This means in Coventry there will be no recruitment of police officers whatsoever for at least 4 years, which will result in substantial cuts to patrolling and neighbourhood policing.  

“We need to fight these cuts to our police in Coventry. I will make sure that the message is heard loud and clear by the Tory Lib Dem Government.

Shadow Home Secretary Alan Johnson MP said:

“Under Labour there were record numbers of police working in neighbourhood teams and crime fell by 43 per cent. Cutting police officers is not the way to fight crime and anti-social behaviour.

The Coalition Government has its priorities wrong. They advocate putting fewer serious criminals in prison and restricting the ability of the police to use the DNA database and CCTV to catch criminals at the same time as cutting police budgets.

Whilst everyone recognises that the deficit must be reduced, safety has to come first. Frontline policing should be prioritised. Fewer police and PCSOs will mean higher crime rates and more dangerous streets. ”

7 September 2010

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