There are moves afoot to get more coppers on the beat. It is about time.
This is a welcome move, but at what cost ? Certainly not at the expense of recruiting more sworn officers. Perhaps Forces are cutting costs to afford the finance of more PCSOs ?
Specialist departments in some Forces are to be reduced in an effort to increase ‘front line’ troops and with no extra finances this must come from already stretched resources.
A Force has already decided to reduce numbers from its Road Traffic department and its Dogs Section to allow more officers to hit the streets.
It may have been better to try to get officers out of offices and from behind desks to increase the numbers of front line officers.
After all, the Road Traffic department have the targets of reducing serious injuries and fatalities as a result of road collisions. They happen to work 24/7 as well.
General purpose dogs and their handlers are one of the busiest specialist response units whose attendance and support is welcomed by front line response officers on a regular basis. They happen to work 24/7 as well.
Somewhere along the line the bean counters and their allies see disbanding units that offer an incredibly specialist and valuable service (at a financial cost admittedly) the chance to become the target of ‘efficiency savings’ to allow them to promote the brand and reduce the effective frontline support.
Itis clear that the people behind decisions or consultation linked to decisions like this are not in the frontline themselves, nor have they a true understanding of what is on offer to the busy and often overstretched response units.
The support following crime, disorder, dispersal, location of people and property, the reassurance to public and officers as well as what is often the first back-up support to response units at spontaneous incidents make the consideration of this an idea a daft idea borne out of a different perspective of the world.
Removing 24/7 resources to put more police on the streets is absolutely baffling, if only because they are policing 24/7 in the first place.
I suspect that someone will be able to enhance their CV prospects as a result.
Efficiency savings………………………..how wonderful.
All we need now is a catchy new mission statement or perhaps an even catchier vision statement that projects the corporate image and we have a real winner on our hands.
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