Manchester Withington MP Jeff Smith has backed Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins’ comments that 8 years of funding cuts are having a serious impact on the quality of policing.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Hopkins says cuts to police funding have forced Greater Manchester Police to prioritise serious crimes such as murder, rape or human trafficking cases, at the expense of other crimes such as anti-social behaviour and burglaries. He said:
“I don’t see what the solution is in the long term unless there’s either an acceptance of that kind of policing or there’s an increase in resources.”
Since 2011, Greater Manchester Police have been forced to cut £186 million from their budget, resulting in 25% cut in the number of officers. The Government has requested a further £57 million in savings by 2020.
Responding to his comments, Jeff said:
“The Chief Constable is right to draw attention to the damaging impact of 8 years of austerity on our police force.
Devastating funding cuts from this Government and the Lib Dem/Tory coalition before it have forced Greater Manchester Police to take 2,000 officers of our streets, making residents in south Manchester less safe.
As crime rises across south Manchester, I’m calling on the Home Secretary to listen to Chief Constables like Ian Hopkins, and invest in our police.”
You can support Jeff’s demand for the Home Secretary to increase funding to Greater Manchester Police by signing Withington Labour Party’s petition here.