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Police

Part of Housing Benefit and Universal Credit in the Social Housing Sector (Regular Payments) – in the House of Commons at 2:03 pm on 12th February 2014.

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Photo of Damian Green Damian Green The Minister for Policing and Criminal Justice, The Minister for Policing and Criminal Justice 2:03 pm, 12th February 2014

I happily join my hon. Friend in congratulating not only Cambridgeshire police and the chief constable, but the PCC, Sir Graham Bright. Between them, they have done an excellent job, as is borne out by the fact that crime in Cambridgeshire is down 24% since June 2010, so its streets are safer than ever before.

I have already mentioned the police innovation fund, which will be worth up to £50 million a year from next year. It represents a new step to incentivise innovation, collaboration and digitisation, to drive efficiencies and improve policing for not just one year, but the longer term. We have established a £20 million precursor fund in this financial year and it has received a good response. As I said, there have been 115 bids, totalling £50 million. The bids cover a wide range of activities, including the development of mobile technology and greater collaboration across the emergency services.

A key area in which we are providing innovation funding and encouraging greater collaboration is the use of body-worn video equipment. Investment in camera technology will enhance police protection and support officers in discharging their duties.