Cuts Watch #372: Police Force to be cut by more than 10,000
More than 10,000 police officers in England and Wales are to be cut over the next two years in England and Wales, according to Labour Party research.
The Coalition’s Spending Review introduced police budget cuts of 20% by 2014-15. According to Labour’s research, the job losses will be a consequence of cutting the police budget by a fifth.
Yvette Cooper, the shadow home secretary, said
Far from protecting frontline policing as ministers promised, over 10,000 police officers are being cut in the next few years alone
The Police Federation, which represents police officers, said numbers were on track to fall back to the level of the 1970s. Chairman Paul McKeever said:
We’re going to be back below 215 officers per 100,000. We’re 257 at the moment, and I’m one of the very few police officers old enough to remember what it was like back in the 1970s……………We really were in meltdown then, it was very bad news indeed. We’ve improved enormously over the last 30 years, through increased funding and the resources we’ve had, and we’re going to lose an awful lot of that.
The head of the Police Superintendents’ Association, Derek Barnett, said whilst they can reduce bureaucracy and streamline back office services, there would “inevitably” be an impact on front-line services.
The Association of Chief Police Officers said there were difficult choices ahead for the police service, for police partners and for government. A spokeswoman said:
The cumulative impact of cutting police budgets year-on-year will translate into reductions of police officers and staff across the service.