Thursday, 6 August 2009

'Whingeing' Chief Constable warns of 300 officer cuts

Devon and Cornwall Police Chief Constable Stephen Otter has warned that the force may have to lose 300 officers in budget cuts. He is asking that the Force's funding be improved so that the cuts are not needed.

In response, local Tory MP Gary Streeter has accused Mr Otter of whingeing.

If there really are to be such sever cuts then it will undoubtedly have a huge impact on local policing. True, Cornwall may not have the crime problems of some of the rest of the country, but we still have our problems.

Order in local towns can sometimes be stretched to breaking point. Just look at what has happene in Newquay and you can see that there is a need for more officers rather than fewer. We all want to see more Police on our streets rather than whizzing around in patrol cars, but this is only possible if we have more officers.

Of course, there cannot be a blank cheque for Police forces and management has to try to use officers' time as effectively as possible, but to lose 300 officers would be a significant problem.

I know that not all Conservative MPs will agree with Mr Streeter but given his comments, I think we deserve to get a categoric statement from David Cameron as to what would happen if his Party wins the next election.

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