Police Effectiveness

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Home Office – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 31st January 2005.

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Photo of Hazel Blears Hazel Blears Minister of State (Home Office) (Policing, Security and Community Safety), Member, Labour Party National Executive Committee 2:30 pm, 31st January 2005

I recognise my hon. Friend's concern that all police officers should be on the front line reassuring their communities. I cannot remember which force was involved, but I understand that, in a recent experiment, every officer from the chief constable down went out on to the streets and, on that day, no crimes were committed at all. I am keen to ensure that police officers do that. That is why we are asking the police to tell us how they spend their time so that we can drive up the number of police officers on the front line from the current average of about 60 per cent. to 70 per cent. That will free up an extra 12,000 officers and make a significant difference.