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Labour and the Conservatives alike are promising more police ahead of tomorrow’s elections for police and crime commissioners, alongside local government elections. PCCs came in in 2012 under the Conservative-Lib Dem coalition government, and were due to be voted for every four years; the 2020 election was put off until this month due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In an open letter, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer says that ‘a vote for Labour on Thursday is a vote for more jobs, more police on the streets and to protect our NHS’. More specifically he says that as a former Director of Public Prosecutions before he entered politics, ‘I led a criminal justice system that prosecuted criminals and protected victims of crime. I know what it takes to get things done to make our country a safer and better place, reversing the rise in violent crime and anti-social behaviour we have seen in recent years’. He proposes ‘getting police out from behind desks and back on our streets to tackle the recent rise in violent crime and anti-social behaviour’.
Conservative PCC candidates meanwhile have added to their names on the ballot paper ‘more police, safer streets’. The Conservatives point to PM Boris Johnson’s plans for an ‘uplift’ of 20,000 more police officers. The Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner candidate up for re-election Peter McCall points to more CCTV in the small towns of the county (more on this link). For the latest on the ‘uplift’ visit the Home Office website.
More on PCCs and what they do or don’t do about crime against business in the May 2021 print edition of Professional Security magazine, that you can read on this link.
Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) were elected for the second time in May 2016 in 40 force areas across England and Wales. A force area is represented by a PCC, except Greater Manchester and London, where PCC responsibilities lie with the elected mayor. A PCC appoints the Chief Constable and sets the force budget and objectives. More on the PCC’s role at the Association of PCCs website.