Cost of meeting rise in crime revealed

Dame Vera Baird
Dame Vera Baird

The cost of meeting the rise in crime while investing to stem that rise and protect the public has been revealed.

Evidence gathered by Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) and police chiefs shows that £440million extra is required in 2018/19 and £845million in 2019/20, an increase of 1.5 per cent to two per cent more than inflation in each year.

The Home Office asked PCCs and police chiefs to assess levels of stretch and resilience in the service over the summer.

The rise in funding would provide an additional 5,000 officers nationally to deal with increased local policing demands from new sorts of crime and increasing complexity, and an armed policing uplift of a further 1,100 officers.

Northumbria PCC, Dame Vera Baird, said: “Since 2012, we have seen police budgets reduce nationally by £2.3billion.

“Northumbria has seen one of the biggest reductions out of all police forces (£123million) in England and Wales. Locally, we have lost nearly 1,000 police officers and nationally the number of police officers on the streets have been reduced.

“Every year, we continue to stretch the pound to ensure we squeeze out every penny. To protect frontline policing, we have had to use reserves – this position is untenable.”

PCCs and Chief Constables are demanding further investment from the Government and have bid for the extra money, which would also tackle newer, emerging crimes such as cybercrime, fraud and child sexual exploitation.

Dame Vera added: “I can assure local residents that I will continue to take the demand for a fair funding deal to the very heart of government.

“Our police officers and staff do an incredible job, their commitment is second to none. When I was elected, I gave a commitment that neighbourhood policing was my priority and would be protected. I now need the Government to give Northumbria a fair funding deal to ensure this commitment is honoured.”