Community Policing

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Home Department – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 8th January 2001.

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Photo of Simon Hughes Simon Hughes Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 12:00 am, 8th January 2001

Given the widespread concern in London and elsewhere about the reduction in community policing—I guess that Ministers would agree with everybody else that losing nearly 2,000 police from the Met over two and a half years and 2,500 across England and Wales means that the position is desperate—will the Minister and the Home Secretary consider additional measures to retain police officers on the ground? First, those coming up to retirement should be encouraged to stay on for an extra five years.

Secondly, good police officers who have retired since the election should be encouraged to return for up to five years. Thirdly, local authorities should establish a new level of policing to deal with low-level crime and disorder on the beat as a new form of supplementary police service in which they could easily participate.