Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Budget cuts to reduce police numbers

Source: Press TV§ionid=351021805

The president of the Association of Chief Police Officers warns that cuts to the Home Office budget threaten to largely reduce the number of police.

At the ACPO annual conference, Sir Hugh Orde warned against the budget cuts, where tens of thousands of police jobs are expected to be lost.

In regard to the cuts, Sir Hugh said, “The harsh reality is that, depending on the severity of the cuts ahead, it would be misleading in the extreme if we were to suggest that the size of the service is sustainable. Quite simply it is not," reported the Telegraph.

Home Office spending is expected to be reduced by one third, which is equivalent to losing 47,500 posts in the police budget. Prime Minister David Cameron earlier refused to make any public statements on whether frontline police services would be cut, although he did not deny it.

Theresa May, the Home Office Secretary, believes, however that, "Front-line availability should increase even as budgets contract."

She also revealed that she will be immediately scrapping the Policing Pledge introduced last year by the Labour government, which holds police accountable to the public through performance targets and minimum standards, and at the same time would press for locally-elected police commissioners, as stated by the BBC.

The Home Office currently employs over 143,000 full-time officers. According to the police minister, Nick Herbet, police overtime has been costing the forces £500 million a year. Their pay and conditions will be reviewed in England and Wales.

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