Today, the Government made the fantastic announcement that, just one year into our police officer recruitment programme, nearly 9,000 additional officers have been recruited across England and Wales, meaning we have smashed our first-year recruitment target and are well on track to recruit the extra 20,000 new police officers by 2023, which we promised in our 2019 manifesto.
Additionally, as part of this year’s £636 million boost to the police funding settlement, more than £400 million will go towards recruiting additional officers. This brings total police funding up to £15.8 billion for 2021-2022, including £400 million to recruit 20,000 new officers by 2023, £914 million for counter-terrorism policing, and £1.1 billion to target national priorities such as reducing serious violence and clamping down on county lines.
This Government have taken several steps to support our police officer and give them the powers and resources they need to keep us safe, including:
- Recruiting nearly 9,000 new police officers over the last year, keeping our streets safe.
- Strengthening police powers through the PCSC Bill, ensuring they have the tools and resources to cut crime and target persistent offenders. More detail on this vital Bill can be found here: Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill passes in House of Commons | Mims Davies
- Boosting police funding by £636 million this year, ensuring our frontline officers have everything need to keep us safe.
- Enshrining a new police covenant into law, enhancing support and protection for our frontline police officers. The initial focus of the covenant will be on physical protection, health and wellbeing, as well as support for families, while also creating a statutory duty for the Government to do more to support the police, both those currently serving and retired.
- Delivering a £45 million Safer Streets Fund to tackle theft, robberies and burglaries in our towns. The money will go towards measures proven to cut crime including locked gates around alleyways, increased street-lighting and the installation of CCTV.
- Investing £65 million into dismantling county lines gangs, keeping our towns and children safe from drug gangs. In January, we announced £40 million of new money to tackle county lines and drugs supply, bringing the total invested to £65 million since November 2019. The funding has already seen over 3,400 people arrested, more than 550 lines closed, more than £9 million street value of drugs and £1.5 million cash seized, and more than 770 vulnerable people safeguarded.
- Delivering £148 million of new investment to cut crime and protect communities from the scourge of illegal drugs. This funding represents a comprehensive drive to cut drug-fuelled crime and violence in communities as we build back our country safer after the pandemic.
- Delivering over £130 million to tackle serious violence and turn our young people away from crime. This funding includes £30 million to support the police to take targeted action in parts of England and Wales most affected by serious violence, as well as up to £23 million for a new early intervention programme that will help stop young people from being drawn into the cycle of violence.
- Toughening up sentences for assaulting emergency workers. In line with our manifesto commitment, this Government are bringing forward legislation to double the maximum sentence for those convicted of assaults on frontline staff including police officers, firefighters, and paramedics
To build on this progress, we need Conservative Police and Crime Commissioners locally who will work with the Government to recruit police officers and cut crime.
Our brilliant, Conservative Police and Crime Commissioner for Sussex, Katy Bourne, is committed to this plan, and has the following, six-point plan to make our streets in Sussex safer:
- Cut crime, catch more criminals, fight drugs gangs and reduce re-offending – making everyone safer
- More police – 379 more police officers and a named PCSO in your community
- Action on rural crime, including a dedicated rural crime team
- Invest in roads policing to tackle anti-social driving
- Make shops and businesses safer places to work and visit
- Support victims of crime, especially our elderly and young and protect our most vulnerable from all forms of abuse
I hope the information above, as well as the Government’s announcement about the success of our police officer recruitment programme, will reassure constituents that we are committed to cutting crime and supporting our police officers, as we build back better, greener and safer in the months and years ahead.