Policing Crisis - MP calls for urgent meeting with Home Secretary

October 10, 2006 10:31 AM
Mark in Parliament

Mark will quiz the Home Sceretary on police numbers in Cheadle

Cheadle MP - Mark Hunter - has called for an urgent meeting with Home Secretary John Reid to discuss police numbers.

Figures obtained by local Liberal Democrat MPs reveal that millions of pounds are withheld from Greater Manchester Police's budget every year and divided between other forces, most notably London's Metropolitan Police.

In 2003 £7.7 million was taken; in 2004 £6.7 million was withheld; and in 2005 £5.8 million of money to which the GMP was entitled went elsewhere. This year the situation is even worse: £14 million has been taken away from Manchester by the Government, and this has led to cuts within the GMP just to make ends meet. 216 officers have been lost as a result of this funding cut.

Following Mark's in depth residents' survey this summer, it also became clear that local people want more bobbies on the beat and they believe current numbers of officers are totally inadequate.

Said Mark, "Over the course of the summer, it has become abundantly clear that we need more bobbies on the beat locally to deter crime and - more specifically - to deal with anti-social behaviour. At the moment, local police chiefs simply do not have the resources to ensure a uniformed presence on the street to the level local people expect and deserve.

"And to compound the problem, it has come to light that our local Police force is subsidising London's force to the tune of £14 million this year. It is simply scandalous that local people in Cheadle and across Greater Manchester are paying for extra police officers inn London when our own force is facing a funding crisis."

"In addition, London's Metropolitan Police have a Community Policing Strategy which means dedicated teams of police on the beat in large numbers in every local authority ward area. I and my other Lib Dem colleagues in Greater Manchester want to see that kind of high profile, high visibility policing repeated in our area."


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